USA. Rep. Cedric Richmond and Rep. Michael Grimm announce formation of the Congressional Maritime Caucus

Saturday, 09 February 2013


The Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association applauds the announcement and looks forward to working with the co-chairmen.

In an effort to give the maritime industry an ongoing and consistent voice in the House of Representatives, Congressman Cedric Richmond (D-LA) and Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY) announced the formation of the first ever Congressional Maritime Caucus.

“From Alaska to Puerto Rico, Louisiana to New York, every day this industry facilitates trade and delivers energy resources that support millions of jobs and pays billions in state and federal taxes every year,” said Congressman Richmond. Representative Grimm continued, “I am honored to co-chair the Congressional Maritime Caucus with Rep. Richmond and look forward to working with him in support of issues that matter most to our nation’s maritime industry.”

The caucus will operate as a forum and information distribution center in the House of Representatives where members of Congress can turn for material on maritime issues, legislation, and initiatives. Congressmen Richmond and Grimm expect to welcome a host of representatives to the caucus who understand the importance of a strong U.S. Merchant Marine.

“The Congressional Maritime Caucus represents a huge step forward for the maritime industry giving us a unified and concentrated voice on Capitol Hill,” said Mike Jewell, President of the Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association (M.E.B.A.). “This important initiative will work hand-in-glove with the grassroots Maritime Action Committees (MACs) that are already in place in numerous congressional districts across the country to spread the maritime message.”

The U.S.-flag maritime industry is integral to the economic and national security of the United States. The importance of having a highly skilled mariner base and critical number of ships that are ready and willing to deliver the cargo needed by the American troops overseas cannot be understated. It is the same maritime industry that reliably carries domestic goods up and down the inland rivers and along the coasts.

About the Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association
The M.E.B.A., America’s oldest maritime labor union, supplies U.S. Coast Guard licensed deck and engineering officers in both the U.S. domestic and international trades. The Union was established in1875. Its members serve aboard tugs and barges, research vessels and in various capacities in the shoreside industries. In wartime, M.E.B.A. members have sailed in virtually unarmed merchant ships delivering critical defense cargo despite attacks from enemy aircrafts, submarines and warships. In times of peace, our members still face dangers such as piracy on the high seas in order to best serve their country.

Commercial Saturation Diver Training and ROV Training Alliance

Divers Institute of Technology and Underwater Centre form alliance to provide saturation diver training to DIT students.

The Divers Institute of Technology (DIT), Seattle Washington and the Underwater Centre in Fort William, Scotland have formed an alliance to provide American and Canadian divers the opportunity to advance their careers in the global subsea market.

The Underwater Centre offers Divers Institute of Technology graduates the opportunity to complete their saturation diver training at their Fort William facility, allowing students to work to unlimited depths using oxygen and helium mixtures (mixed gas) and saturation techniques. The Centre's three-week training in a working saturation dive chamber with numerous bell bounces in a tidal environment, gives the student real-life experience of saturation diving.

In addition to the saturation and mixed gas diver training, the alliance offers the Underwater Centre's ROV pilot technician training.

Prior to the alliance, there was nowhere in the United States that offered the Closed Bell training required to obtain the prestigious, internationally recognized saturation diving certificate. DIT can now offer American and Canadian subsea workers access to certification and training that will provide additional employment opportunities.

The partnership is currently underway and the first student to come over from Canada has recently finished his training. Aaron Hogan, who has just completed his HSE Closed Bell Course, as well as the Diver Medic training, was delighted with the staff and facilities at the Underwater Centre and is looking forward to putting his new qualifications to good use when he secures his first post in the industry.

Aaron Hogan said, “I’ve been around water since I was very young as I used to work on my dad’s lobster boat so it seemed like a natural progression to decide to get into commercial diving.

“I’d heard quite a lot about the Underwater Centre and one of my friends had come over to learn here so I decided to discuss my options with the staff at DIT and they set everything in motion.

“The people that work at the Underwater Centre are professionals and the facilities reflect that. It has opened many doors for me in the diving industry and I think the more training you have makes you more employable.”

As well as DIT graduates, Divers Institute will also assist any other divers in the USA to access the courses at The Underwater Centre, offering advice, assistance and a straightforward registration procedure at substantial savings.

Mr. Steve Ham, General Manager of The Underwater Centre, believes both schools have recognized the need to maintain a high standard of training, industry focused competence and reliable certification on a worldwide basis, which the alliance between the two centres provides.

“For some time now the Divers Institute of Technology and The Underwater Centre, here in Fort William have enjoyed a developing relationship based on a shared ethos of providing students with the best possible platform on which to build a global subsea career in diving and ROV. We are delighted this relationship has now developed into a formal alliance.”

Mr. Bruce Banks, Managing Member and owner of Divers Institute of Technology is excited by the opportunities that DIT students will now enjoy.

“Divers Institute has been a steadfast proponent for strong diving standards and has been instrumental in helping develop the Canadian Standards Association Z275.4 and Z275.5 diving standards that are reciprocally recognized by HSE and other world-recognized diving standard organizations. To that end, our goal is to ensure that are students are afforded the best employment opportunities throughout the world. Our new alliance with the Underwater Centre expands those opportunities and provides advanced training that will provide our students with the needed saturation diver training to meet the challenges of the subsea marketplace.”

As a leading educational facility in the industry, DIT trains students to excel in all aspects of commercial diving. Their surface-supplied dive training is conducted in open water, giving students real-world experience that cannot be duplicated in pools, tanks or quarries. Students perform deep dives to 165 feet (50 meters), employing both in-water and surface decompression. Among the competencies that DIT provides its Unrestricted Surface Supplied Diver trainees are lightweight diving equipment and procedures, underwater hydraulic and pneumatic tools, underwater welding and underwater burning, Non-Destructive Testing (NDT), Hazardous Material (HazMat) diving, underwater salvage, hyperbaric chamber, diving physics, and diving medicine, including decompression treatments. Their alliance with the Underwater Centre will now provide DIT students training opportunities that will include saturation and HSE Close Bell diving

Last Updated ( Saturday, 09 February 2013 )