7-7x7 Service for Emergency Issuing of CECs
International Seafarers, and the UK Ship Register (UKSR) customers that employ them, are set to benefit from reduced waiting times for the issue of emergency Certificates of Equivalent Competency (eCRA).
Requests for the urgent documents can now be made seven days a week as part of a new model being piloted by the Seafarer Training and Certification team at the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).
From Monday 3 February 2020 requests for eCRAs will be picked up by a member of staff between 7am and 7pm every day, including weekends and bank holidays. With all the required documentation submitted correctly, applications will be processed within 14 hours.
The pilot offers an extension to the service the certification team already provide to operators when they require emergency cover to sail. The current operation runs Monday - Friday between 9.30am and 4.30pm.
Head of the UK Ship Register Katy Ware said “Our focus is the customer, and that includes seafarers as well a ship owners and operators around the world. We’ve been listening and we understand the commercial pressure everyone is under to keep ships manned and moving. Piloting this new scheme is part of the transformation taking place across the UK Ship Register as we deliver a more progressive service.”
All seafarers working on board a UK flagged ship that do not hold a UK Certificate of Competency are required to hold a valid CEC. These certificates are issued on a like-for-like basis against a valid Certification of Competency from an approved administration.
The pilot will be reviewed after five months. The team will be measuring the number of requests that come in for emergency CECs during these extended hours as well as asking for feedback from UKSR customers on the enhanced service.
The MCA issued or revalidated over 9,000 certificates to seafarers in 2019, qualifying them to work on vessels worldwide.