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General Requirements, STCW Certificates, Endorsements & Training Required for Officer-in-Charge of Engineering Watch (OICEW)

oicew in action

The Officer in Charge of Engineering Watch (OICEW) is the officer on watch in charge of the main propulsion plant of the ship, and of the associated auxiliaries. He shall be responsible for the safe and proper operation of such units, and for the performance of the duties prescribed in these regulations and by other competent authority. OICEW will also be responsible for power generation and distribution systems and other equipment such as refrigeration plant and pumping and ventilation systems and more.

OICEW duties include but not limited to monitoring the mechanical, electrical, hydraulic and control equipment; in charge of the sophisticated engine management systems; maintenance of the machinery space logs and the significance of the readings taken; and carry out engineering operations, watch keeping and engineering maintenance at operational level.

Other duties such as duties associated with handing over a watch Safety and emergency procedures; change-over of remote/automatic to local control of all systems; Safety precautions to be observed during a watch and immediate actions to be taken in the event of fire or accident, with particular reference to oil systems.

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ship engine

The Officer in Charge of Engineering Watch (OICEW) is the officer on watch in charge of the main propulsion plant of the ship, and of the associated auxiliaries.

General Requirements to Obtain a Certificate of Competency as an OICEW


OICEW in a manned engine-room or designated duty engineers in a periodically unmanned engine-room (750 kW propulsion power or more) must:

  • Age: be not less than 18 years of age.
  • Seagoing Service: have completed not less than 12 months of combined workshop skills training and approved seagoing service of which not less than 6 months shall be seagoing service as part of an approved training program or; not less than 36 months of combined workshop skills training and approved seagoing service of which not less than 30 months shall be seagoing service in the engine department. This must be documented in an approved training record book. Also must have performed, during the required seagoing service, engine-room watch-keeping duties under the supervision of the chief engineer or a qualified engineer officer for a period of not less than six months.
  • Education & Training: have completed approved education and training and meet the standards of competence specified in section A-III/1 of the STCW Code.
  • Note: The minimum period of training has been reduced from 30 months to 12 months of a combined workshop skills training and an approved seagoing service (six months) as part of an approved training program. However competence levels have not been reduced and training periods should remain as currently set by administrations.
ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS UNDER STCW 2010

Officers in charge of an engineering watch in a manned engine room or designated duty engineers in a periodically unmanned engine room:

  • Use of internal communication systems
  • Knowledge of engine room resource management
  • Application of leadership and teamwork skills
  • Contribute to the safety of personnel and ship
  • Maintenance and repair of electrical and electronic equipment
  • Appropriate use of hand tools, machine tools and measuring instruments for fabrication and repair onboard

STCW Certificates, Endorsements & Training Required for OICEW

oicew certiticates
      Table:OICEW Engineer certificates and training requirements. Credits: ITWF

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