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Merchant Marine Radio Officer Job Description, Career as a Merchant Marine Radio Officer, Salary, Employment - Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

bonus officers academies ships academy

Education and Training Varies—see profile

Salary Median—$14 per hour

Employment Outlook Fair

Definition and Nature of the Work

Radio officers work aboard cargo vessels and passenger ships. They use radio, Morse code, and other electronic and satellite communication devices to contact shore headquarters and other ships. In addition, radio officers receive and record time signals, weather reports, and other information important to the smooth operation of their vessels. They also maintain the radio equipment and depth-recording and electronic navigation devices on ships.

Education and Training Requirements

Radio officers must have either first- or second-class radio-telegraph operator's licenses from the Federal Communications Commission. To get such licenses, applicants must pass written examinations covering sea communication regulations, operating practices, and message routing. Passenger ships may have six radio officers; cargo ships have only one.

Radio officers get the best preparation at maritime academies. Without formal training the licensing examination may be difficult to pass. Marine academies include the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, the U.S. Naval Academy, and state academies in California, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, and Texas. Candidates for the Merchant Marine Academy and the Naval Academy must be nominated by members of Congress. Admission to the other academies is competitive. To qualify for the federal academies, applicants must be between seventeen and twenty-two years old, single, high school graduates, U.S. citizens, and in good physical condition.

Radio operators may also get sea experience through training programs sponsored by one of the unions that represent seamen. However, the programs accept only a limited number of trainees who have no sea experience.

Getting the Job

Graduates of marine academies or training programs may take U.S. Coast Guard licensing exams. Once certified, radio officers can register at union hiring halls.

Advancement Possibilities and Employment Outlook

Career radio officers are members of a very specialized profession and have few chances for promotion. Some become head radio officers.

Employment of radio officers is expected to grow more slowly than the average for all occupations through 2014. The number of graduates of marine academies should slightly exceed the number of jobs available. Offshore oil and mineral exploration may offer the most job prospects. Openings do occur when career radio officers retire or leave the field.

Working Conditions

At sea, radio officers stand watch in the radio room. During every twenty-four hours, they work two shifts of four hours with eight-hour breaks between shifts. On some ships, radio officers work regular eight-hour days.

Clean and adequate accommodations are provided on board ship. Exposure to the weather and the risk of fire, collision, and sinking go with the job. Radio officers' work requires long periods away from home.

Earnings and Benefits

Earnings vary according to rank, type of ship, and location. In 2004 the median wage of all radio officers was $14 per hour. Overtime and bonus pay increased the earnings of some officers.

Where to Go for More Information

National Marine Engineers Beneficial Association
444 N. Capitol St., Ste. 800
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 638-5355
http://www.d1meba.org

Seafarers International Union
5201 Auth Way
Camp Springs, MD 20746
(301) 899-0675
http://www.seafarers.org

Room and board, medical care, and hospitalization insurance are provided. Vacation, ranging from eighteen to thirty days for every thirty days of work, and retirement plans are other benefits of the job. Officers who are forced to retire prematurely because of disabilities may be eligible for partial pensions.

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almost 3 years ago

Dear Sir

I am Rex J Antony worked as Marine
Radio Officer last 28 years.


Kindly find me Job now

Thanks & Best Regards

Rex J Antony

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over 6 years ago

This list is outdated. Radio Officers were required by law on ship prior to 1999, to operate the morse code distress system on 500 kHz.

There is no legal requirement for a dedicated Radio Officer today, as a automated distress system called GMDSS does not require it.

With the new system, there is no morse code, there is no telegraph license required, and the navigational officers have been forced to do what used to be the Radio Officer's job.

Maritime Academies do not offer Radio Officer training, but a short two-week course on the GMDSS.

There are very few jobs for Radio Officers today. In the U.S. some Military Sealift Command vessels (civilian manned government ships) carry radio officers. There are hardly any commercial vessels that carry radio officers today.

It is NOT recommended that anyone devote any time to becoming a Radio Officer. The job simply does not exist anymore.

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over 6 years ago

Radio officier Fm 1982 to 2006

Gmdss and other cert.

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about 5 years ago

Dear sir,
Thanks for information abt radio officer.i'm a R/O i've more than 3 years exp.so if u 've any good company for me to accomodate please advise me.
Thanks & Brgds,
Tariq Khan.

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over 6 years ago

MUST HAVE EITHE FIRST

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over 6 years ago

Dear Sir,

I am a woman who is willing to work as a Radio Officer. I am working with a shipping company.
I have TWIC and Z-card. I have diploma
in computer and also know some shipping knowledge.
Please, how can I apply to be a Radio Officer. If they is school I can take some course and the place and town to find. I am living at Texas, Houston.
I am waiting for my reply.

Thank you.
Mary

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over 7 years ago

As of the year 2000 Radio Officers are no longer required on board merchant ships, This advert is wrong. I am an ex RO.

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over 4 years ago

I myself was a Marine Radio officer and worked at sea for about 10 years, I got changed my trade and passed my OOW (deck) in 2002 from United kingdom. Now I am working at sea in second officer/communication officer capacity, although Radio officers are no more onboard but even though some shipping companies particularly cruise liners still carrying Radio officer onboard. I also prefer to sail as a Radio officer if I will get a chance again. I am also looking for some job whether 2nd mate only on oil Tankers also a Radio officer.

Many thanks n Kind rgds
Hussain Abbas

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almost 5 years ago

marine Radio officers job

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about 7 years ago

Looking for Derek Gough who wrote here two months ago about R/O adverts. Michael Kent and myself are anxious to hook up with you as former students at South Shields and at TS Seacroft circa 1950's

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almost 8 years ago

This description of the Radio Officer's job is both outdated and full of errors!



Whoever wrote this has no idea what he/she is talking about.

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about 8 years ago

The American Radio Association located in Reno, NV is the sole exclusively radio/electronics related union remaining that still has a few jobs. They're associated with the ILA. The SIU is a union for cooks, BRs, oilers, and deck.

The MEBA is primarily engineers whereas the MMP is Masters/Mates/Pilots.

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over 2 years ago

I WANT TO JOIN AS RADIO OFFICER ON SHIP OR AT OFFICE.

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almost 3 years ago

Dear Sir

I am Rex J Antony worked as Marine
Radio Officer last 28 years.


Kindly find me Job now

Thanks & Best Regards

Rex J Antony

Vote down Vote up

almost 3 years ago

Dear Sir

I am Rex J Antony worked as Marine
Radio Officer last 28 years.


Kindly find me Job now

Thanks & Best Regards

Rex J Antony

Vote down Vote up

almost 3 years ago

Dear Sir

I am Rex J Antony worked as Marine
Radio Officer last 28 years.


Kindly find me Job now

Thanks & Best Regards

Rex J Antony

Vote down Vote up

almost 3 years ago

Dear Sir

I am Rex J Antony worked as Marine
Radio Officer last 28 years.


Kindly find me Job now

Thanks & Best Regards

Rex J Antony

Vote down Vote up

almost 3 years ago

Dear Sir

I am Rex J Antony worked as Marine
Radio Officer last 28 years.


Kindly find me Job now

Thanks & Best Regards

Rex J Antony

Vote down Vote up

about 3 years ago

This information is a bit outdated and inaccurate.



The Radio Officer job no longer exists.

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about 3 years ago

have grol with old ship radar

training need new radar theory

element 8that uses transistors

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about 4 years ago

I am Jerson J.Benanua (46 yrs old) work as Radio Officer for bulk, container, Heavy lift vessel for almost 12 years. experience electrician 3 contract about 2 years.
Interested Radio Officer job as capable to my license.Holder of valid GMDSS cert.& document.Awaiting for your reply.etc.

Jerson

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over 4 years ago

Jobs as Radio Officer are about as plentiful as railroad telegraph operator jobs. After all, whom would a ship's telegraph operator 'work'? Ships radio officers are a historical and nostalgic memory.

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over 4 years ago

As regards the jobs for marine radio officer , the scope and possiblity no longer exists with the introduction of GMDSS sine February, 1999. I myself worked as a marine radio officer on board ships and had to quit in the year 1999.

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over 4 years ago

As regards the jobs for marine radio officer , the scope and possiblity no longer exists with the introduction of GMDSS sine February, 1999. I myself worked as a marine radio officer on board ships and had to quit in the year 1999.

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almost 5 years ago

Hi every body, here i am.Am attatched with Radio Operator profession since 1971.

Would like to join ship even now if chanced.

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almost 5 years ago

will come back after going through all the stuff.

rgds

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over 5 years ago

HI, my name is hosein razavi.
my major in university expert of marriner about of the rules, ship stability, construction,cargo handling,etc....from Island khark
I living in bushehr,
I am 27 years old. I was born TEHRAN, I finished soljur .I single
I like to compate this company.

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over 5 years ago

HI, my name is hosein razavi.
my major in university expert of marriner about of the rules, ship stability, construction,cargo handling,etc....from Island khark
I living in bushehr,
I am 27 years old. I was born TEHRAN, I finished soljur .I single
I like to compate this company.

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over 5 years ago

Hi I am a expert Radio Officer having
25 years of experience. Kindly find me job.

Thanks and best regards

Afaq Khan

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over 5 years ago

Dear sir,
Thanks for information abt radio officer.i'm also R/O cum administrator i've one year exp.so if u 've any good company for my good future please advise me.
Thanks & Brgds,
PRAVIN.

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almost 6 years ago

Good day

Please can You consider my candidature for the working in Your company as 2 nd OFF

Looking forward cooperation,

Best wishes,

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almost 6 years ago

5"-7'.served as marine radio officer.

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over 6 years ago

Dear Sir



Would you please let me know ,if have some vacancy for radio officer.



I have an experinece on that position for at least 30 years.



Best Regards

Johnny.H