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AMSA Engineer Certification Requirements for Seafarers on a Commercial Vessel in Australian Domestic Waters

amsa engineer qualifications

The National System for Domestic Commercial Vessel Safety was introduced in Australia in 2013 under the Marine Safety (Domestic Commercial Vessel) National Law Act 2012 (National Law). If you want to work on a commercial vessel in Australian waters, you must hold an appropriate certificate of competency issued under the National System for Domestic Commercial Vessel Safety. By law, any person working as a certified crew member on a commercial vessel in Australia must hold the relevant certificate of competency. This ensures that people operating commercial vessels are competent and medically fit for their assigned tasks and areas of operation.

You must get a Certificate of Competency or revalidate your existing qualification to work in Australian domestic waters.

marine engine

If you want to work on a commercial vessel in Australian waters, you must hold an appropriate certificate of competency issued under the National System for Domestic Commercial Vessel Safety.

General Requirements - AMSA Domestic Engineer Certificate of Competency


  • Age: Must be at least 16 years old on the certificate issue date
  • Medical: If you're applying for a high complexity certificate of competency, you are required to submit a Certificate of medical fitness for a near coastal qualification form 559.
  • Eyesight: If you're applying for a new certificate of competency, you'll need to submit a completed Eyesight test certificate form 542. There are two components of the eyesight test - vision (near and distance) and colour vision.
  • Sea Service: Record of sea service form 771, OR an approved sea service log book, OR the on board sea service record from your task book,OR a letter from the vessel operator, owner, master or chief engineer detailing your sea service.
  • Course Requirements: You need to get training from an AMSA approved training organization.
  • After meeting all the other requirements for the certificate - pass a final assessment

Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 Near Coastal Requirements

  • Certification: Work as an engineer or chief engineer on vessel in waters to the outer limits of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). This certificate will allow you to work as - Chief engineer on vessels with inboard engines with propulsion power up to 500 kilowatts within the exclusive economic zone (EEZ); Second engineer on vessels with inboard engines with propulsion power up to 750 kilowatts within the EEZ; Chief or second engineer on vessels with outboard engines within the EEZ; An assistant under the direct supervision of the chief engineer; In the engine room of a vessel up to 80 metres long with propulsion power up to 3000 kilowatts.
  • The applicant must have completed a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 course at Certificate 2 level; AND

Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 Sea Service Requirements

  • Have at least 20 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with propulsion power ≥75 kW that includes at least 10 days on vessels with inboard diesel engines and a completed approved task book; OR
  • 60 days qualifying sea service on vessels with propulsion power ≥75 kW that includes at least 30 days on vessels with inboard diesel engines; and
  • The applicant may be issued with a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC certificate restricted to outboard engines if the applicant does not meet the above requirements for qualifying sea service on vessels with inboard diesel engines and has - 20 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with propulsion power ≥75 kW and a completed approved task book; or 60 days qualifying sea service on vessels with propulsion power ≥75 kW.
  • The qualifying sea service must be completed while performing any of the following - duties as a general purpose hand; duties permitted for a Coxswain Grade 1 NC or Coxswain Grade 2 NC certificate; duties as an assistant to an engine driver, to a chief engineer or to a second engineer.

Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 Near Coastal Requirements

  • Certification: This qualification lets you act as a chief engineer, or a second engineer. This certificate will allow you to work as - Chief engineer on vessels with inboard engines with propulsion power up to 750 kilowatts within the exclusive economic zone (EEZ); Second engineer on vessels with inboard engines with propulsion power up to 1500 kilowatts within the EEZ; Chief or second engineer on a vessel with outboard engines within the EEZ; An assistant under the direct supervision of the chief engineer; In the engine room of a vessel up to 80 metres long with propulsion power up to 3000 kilowatts.
  • Have completed a Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 course at Certificate 3 level; AND

Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 NC Sea Service Requirements

  • Have at least 180 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥150 kW and a completed approved task book; OR
  • 360 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥150 kW; OR
  • 120 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥150 kW and a completed approved task book, while holding a Coxswain Grade 1 NC or Coxswain Grade 2 NC certificate endorsed for 500 kW inboard propulsion or a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC certificate; OR
  • 240 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥150 kW, while holding a Coxswain Grade 1 NC or Coxswain Grade 2 NC certificate endorsed for 500 kW inboard propulsion or Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC certificate; OR
  • 90 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥150 kW and a completed approved task book while holding a workshop skill equivalent qualification; OR
  • 180 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥150 kW, while holding a workshop skill equivalent qualification.
  • The qualifying sea service must be completed while performing duties as - an engineer, an engine driver, a chief engineer or second engineer; or an assistant to an engine driver, to a chief engineer or to a second engineer; or a general purpose hand.

Marine Engine Driver Grade 1 Near Coastal Requirements

  • Certification: This qualification lets you act as chief engineer or second engineer. This certificate will allow you to work - As chief engineer on vessels with inboard engines with propulsion power up to 1500 kilowatts within the exclusive economic zone (EEZ); As second engineer on vessels with inboard engines with propulsion power up to 3000 kilowatts within the EE; As chief or second engineer on vessels with outboard engines within the EEZ; As an assistant under the direct supervision of the chief engineer.; In the engine room of a vessel up to 80 metres long with propulsion power up to 3000 kilowatts.
  • The applicant must have completed a Marine Engine Driver Grade 1 course at Certificate 4 level; AND

Marine Engine Driver Grade 1 NC Sea Service Requirements

  • Have at least: 240 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book while holding a Coxswain Grade 1 NC or Coxswain Grade 2 NC certificate endorsed for 500 kW inboard propulsion; OR
  • 480 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW while holding a Coxswain Grade 1 NC or Coxswain Grade 2 NC certificate endorsed for 500 kW inboard propulsion; OR
  • 180 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC certificate; OR
  • 360 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC certificate; OR
  • 90 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book, while holding a workshop skill equivalent qualification; OR
  • 180 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW, while holding a workshop skill equivalent qualification; OR
  • 120 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 NC certificate; OR
  • 240 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 NC certificate.
  • The qualifying sea service must be completed while performing duties as - an engineer, an engine driver, a chief engineer or second engineer; or an assistant to an engine driver, to a chief engineer or to a second engineer; or a general purpose hand.

Engineer Class 3 Near Coastal Requirements

  • Certification: This qualification lets you carry out the duties of chief engineer. This certificate will allow you to work - As chief engineer on vessels with inboard engines with propulsion power up to 3000 kilowatts within the exclusive economic zone (EEZ); As chief engineer or second engineer on vessels with outboard engines with unlimited propulsion within the EEZ; As an assistant under the direct supervision of the chief engineer; In the engine room of a vessel up to 80 metres long with propulsion power up to 3000 kilowatts.
  • The applicant must have completed a Marine Engine Driver Grade 1 course at Certificate 4 level; AND

Engineer Class 3 NC Sea Service Requirements

  • Have at least 240 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book while holding a Coxswain Grade 1 NC or Coxswain Grade 2 NC certificate endorsed for 500 kW inboard propulsion; OR
  • 480 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW while holding a Coxswain Grade 1 NC or Coxswain Grade 2 NC certificate endorsed for 500 kW inboard propulsion; OR
  • 180 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC certificate; OR
  • 360 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 3 NC certificate; OR
  • 90 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book, while holding a workshop skill equivalent qualification; OR
  • 180 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW, while holding a workshop skill equivalent qualification; OR
  • 120 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW and a completed approved task book, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 NC certificate; OR
  • 240 days qualifying sea service on commercial vessels with inboard diesel engines with propulsion power ≥375 kW, while holding a Marine Engine Driver Grade 2 NC certificate.
  • The qualifying sea service must be completed while performing duties as - an engineer, an engine driver, a chief engineer or second engineer; or an assistant to an engine driver, to a chief engineer or to a second engineer; or a general purpose hand.

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