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The Engineering Fireman/Oiler and Watertender (FOWT) is responsible for standing engineering watches. This includes but is not limited to the hydraulic systems, cargo fluid systems (piping and pneumatic systems), internal combustion engines, material handling equipment (fork trucks, pallet jacks, etc.), cargo handling equipment (cranes, booms, winches, etc.), ship’s boats including engines, associated machinery, davits and winches, hull structure (bulkheads, decks, bulwarks, railings), mooring machinery.

The FOWT must also be proficient in the use of machine shop equipment (lathes, milling machines, drill presses, arbor presses, etc.), hand tools, handheld power tools, burning, brazing, and welding procedures (Oxy-Acetylene cutting and brazing systems, carbon arc, stick welding) and welding systems. The incumbent will assist, observe and perform “Quality Assurance” on work done by shipyard or other shoreside repair personnel, as directed. The incumbent must be proficient in the performance of fire, boat, and damage control drills, taking the initiative to perform emergency drills as required. The FOWT is directly responsible to the First Assistant Engineer and works under the supervision of the Second Assistant Engineer (Cargo).

Everything in this Position Description is considered to be an essential function of this position. Perform other duties as assigned.


Minimum Eligibility Requirements: Must be a United States citizen of at least 18 years of age and possess and maintain:

  • U.S. Passport
  • Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC)
  • United States Coast Guard (USCG) Merchant Mariner’s Credential (MMC),

Position Specific Requirements:

NMC endorsed as: Qualified Member of the Engine Department (QMED) Fireman Oiler Watertender.

SIU mariners work a rotation of four months on with two months off. Typically all mariners have a private room and bathroom. Pay consist of monthly base wage, regular OT, weekend OT, Holiday OT, and Vacation pay. Benefit package is provided for the mariner and dependents which includes training and advancement at no cost.

  • At least 2 years sea time in an engine approved rating. The USCG will approve use of 60% of your military sea service and apply it to obtain a USCG endorsement of FOWT with NO RECENCY REQUIREMENT

Engine Approved ratings:

  • Machinists Mate
  • Boilerman
  • Electrician Mate
  • Engineman
  • Hull Technician
  • Machinery Repairman
  • Any Officer of the Engineering Watch
  • All Vets with the required approved rating and sea time will need to provide documentation
  • 1) Transcript of Sea service (TOSS)
  • 2) History of Assignments(HOA)
  • 3) Page 4
  • 4) Military Tracking Software printout to include all info required by 46 CFR 10.232(a)(2)
  • DD-214

Application Process

The school is a VA approved facility

  1. Complete an Career Application at My MaritimeCareer
  2. Apply for or renew necessary credentials:
    1. TWIC
    2. Passport
    3. MMC
  3. Follow up with your recruiter to schedule your SIU Physical, Drug Test, Benzene, and Functional Capacity exam through an SIU Union Hall.
  4. Follow up with your recruiter to schedule your training, or call the Admissions office at 1-800-732-2739