Oral Exam Questions for Class 2 – Deck Advice When answering oral questions the candidate should bear

in mind that as the chief operational officer onboard, safety will always be paramount in their mind in any shipboard operation. Additionally, candidate must be knowledgeable and familiar with IMO Convention requirements; Code of Safe Working Practices for Merchant Seaman; company’s standard operating procedures, etc. Most important, listen to the question and answer accordingly. As most candidates have memorised rules, regulations and other data, they have a tendency to be triggered by familiar sounding words and answer verbatim according to their stored knowledge which does not answer the examiner’s question. Therefore, think before you answer. As a Chief Officer, you are responsible for issuing orders that might implicate the crew’s safety. The following are some of the usual questions that are asked. 1. How do you take over as Chief Officer? This question should be approached with the main responsibilities of a Chief Officer, i.e. it is related first to cargo; then, maintenance in relation to cargo gear and cargo space; and finally, navigation. The answer will be handled based on type of ship; whether the ship is loading or discharging; the time to departure. In answering the question, the candidate should bear in mind that his/her answers could inadvertently relate to a particular technical certificate of the vessel, for e.g. discussion on cargo gears could lead to a discussion on chain registers and their requirements; quadrennial survey, and how they are carried out; and, the difference of proof and safe working load. It is therefore essential that the candidate listen to the examiner’s question clearly and answer accordingly. 2. How will you prepare for a Load Line Survey? The candidate needs to know that Load Line in general relates to the watertightness, access, openings, loadline marks, etc. He should commence answering the question by covering the items for inspection under loadline on the main deck, and then to the item in the accommodation. By answering in this manner he is more organised in his thoughts and will cover all items related to this topic. It is not impressive to answer in a haphazard manner. He should commence by discussing the importance of watertightness, on the main deck, especially in relation to access and openings of cargo spaces. How is watertightness inspected and maintained in the cargo spaces; and, access into the forward compartment (forecastle) and the main accommodation. He should discuss on the maintenance of the ventilations pipes and openings on decks leading to cargo spaces, ballast tank, oil tanks, etc.

He should discuss on the maintenance of railings, bulwarks, scuppers, drainage system on deck that ensure that seawater coming on deck is quickly discharged overboard as stability can be effected by water staying onboard for too long - free surface movement. Safe passage of crew on deck during bad weather. Watertight openings below main deck. The importance of loadline markings and draft marks, which could be checked with the official template which is carried onboard. Now, the candidate should proceed to discuss on the maintenance of the loadline items in the accommodation, i.e. watertight doors, portholes, ventilation ducts, access, gangways, engine room sky light, etc. The emergency shutdown of main engine by manual (levers) or other systems.

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