Able Seaman (AB)

Able Seaman (AB), is an MMC National Rating Endorsement required to work on seagoing vessels greater than 100 GRT. Therefore the AB requires sea service experience and demonstration of professional knowledge. Consequently, individuals without sea service experience should apply for the entry level rating of Ordinary Seaman (OS).

Able Seaman (AB) Professional Requirements

The mariner applying for an AB must meet professional requirements for both sea service and knowledge. Firstly, the sea service experience requires from 180-days on any waters, to 1080 on near coastal ocean waters. For example; AB Fishing is 180-days on any waters. And AB Special is 360-days on any waters. While AB Unlimited is 1080-days on near coastal ocean waters. Lastly, the AB may advance to a superior AB rating by meeting the experience requirement for that rating.

Secondly, knowledge of several subjects is required. This includes nautical terms, aids to navigation, and compasses. And seamanship, including demonstration of knots and splices. And lastly, knowledge of lights, shapes, and sound signals used in the Rules of the Road.

Able Seaman Checklist >>

Point of interest. Mariners applying for an AB may use the same sea service experience to apply for an officer endorsement. Checkout the following pages to see if you qualify.

Master or Mate 200-ton and less

Apprentice Mate (steersman) of towing

Master or Mate of Fishing Industry Vessels

An additional requirement for the AB is holding a Lifeboatman or Lifeboatman Limited. This requires completion of a Lifeboatman or Proficiency in Survival Craft (PSC) course. ColPac Maritime does not offer this course. However we recommend Compass Courses in Edmonds, Washington for this course.

Lifeboatman Checklist >>

Able Seaman (AB) Courses Able Seaman Course (5-days / $700)

This US Coast Guard approved course will satisfy the exams for any Able Seaman rating. This includes both the written and practical exams. But, this course does not satisfy the training and exam requirements for the Lifeboatman or Lifeboatman Limited ratings.

Able Seaman (AB) Course Schedule

Call 503-841-6066 for alternative scheduling options.

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