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  1. #576
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    What they should be doing to try to keep Senior tech ratings is CFR

    They are taking on DE L/EA with a level 6/7 (so I assume that is what the TTS/apprenticeship gives them). DE NS Engineer officers have to have a level 8, cadets/OUT do a level 7.

    Keep capable Trained and skilled people in the NS, give them career progression to officer rank, higher salaries, (arguably) better pay and conditions. Good for retention
    If you progress them to officer rank they will end up Class officer of a recruit platoon/pots course for a few months and will be out the gate as soon as it's over.
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  2. #577
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    What they should be doing to try to keep Senior tech ratings is CFR
    No for two reasons

    (a) once you lose them from the ranks you have in effect lost their speciality as they become management as opposed to work force
    (b) pay structure is different and the equating pay grade to a CPO with 15 years service would mean you need to probably put him in as Lt (NS ) rank up setting the balance in ranks.

    Perhaps the solution then is to create another level just for those with trades or specialist skill, between Officer and Senior rate? It could get around having to promote people away from their trade too.
    Two ways of going about it, the RN way or the US Army way

    The RN recruit people directly into trades without them serving recognised apprenticeships and train them accordingly in the role and promote them within the trade. So instead of a General Service enlistment, a guy is a tradesman from day one, does his basic in that role and goes to sea from the day he graduates as a recruit and works through a grading system

    The US army has Warrant officer pilots who do the job as pilots paid a suitable salary without being 'management, again come in as potential pilots pass out on the basics and work up to two or three grades unique to the pilots.

    Having the larger divisions absorb the majority of the recruits, used to be Mechs and Executive branch in the day tended to put a lot of round pegs in square holes, profile people prior to recruitment directly into where you need them and train them in that role.

    Keep capable Trained and skilled people in the NS, give them career progression to officer rank, higher salaries, (arguably) better pay and conditions. Good for retention
    Up to a point its good for morale but not everyone is cut out to manage as opposed to do the actual physical work. I would suggest reducing the cadet time, get rid of the University time and fast track candidates into the various branches and commission them into the role within 9 to 12 months of enlistment, further education such as degrees can be applied for after 2 years of service after commissioning

    What does need to happen is that when ships come along side for refits.. everybody off and shore parties take over the running of ships and all associated duties, running people at duties one in three is killing morale and worth no money to the people carrying them out while posted to ships.

    Scrap income tax and levies on PDA and all general service enlistments carry out a min of 3 years of their first 5 year engagement posted to a ship to include the recruit training period.

    But the problem being that major changes as suggested will upset the status quo in bot Seniors Rates and Officers to a degree that i would be unworkable or unofficially blocked.
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  3. #578
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    If you progress them to officer rank they will end up Class officer of a recruit platoon/pots course for a few months and will be out the gate as soon as it's over.
    As Tech officers? When the NS needs MEOs to put operational units back at sea, to manage maintenance of ships alongside, to instruct and manage TTS/apprentice training ?

    Quote Originally Posted by hptmurphy View Post
    No for two reasons

    (a) once you lose them from the ranks you have in effect lost their speciality as they become management as opposed to work force
    (b) pay structure is different and the equating pay grade to a CPO with 15 years service would mean you need to probably put him in as Lt (NS ) rank up setting the balance in ranks.



    Two ways of going about it, the RN way or the US Army way

    The RN recruit people directly into trades without them serving recognised apprenticeships and train them accordingly in the role and promote them within the trade. So instead of a General Service enlistment, a guy is a tradesman from day one, does his basic in that role and goes to sea from the day he graduates as a recruit and works through a grading system

    The US army has Warrant officer pilots who do the job as pilots paid a suitable salary without being 'management, again come in as potential pilots pass out on the basics and work up to two or three grades unique to the pilots.

    Having the larger divisions absorb the majority of the recruits, used to be Mechs and Executive branch in the day tended to put a lot of round pegs in square holes, profile people prior to recruitment directly into where you need them and train them in that role.



    Up to a point its good for morale but not everyone is cut out to manage as opposed to do the actual physical work. I would suggest reducing the cadet time, get rid of the University time and fast track candidates into the various branches and commission them into the role within 9 to 12 months of enlistment, further education such as degrees can be applied for after 2 years of service after commissioning

    What does need to happen is that when ships come along side for refits.. everybody off and shore parties take over the running of ships and all associated duties, running people at duties one in three is killing morale and worth no money to the people carrying them out while posted to ships.

    Scrap income tax and levies on PDA and all general service enlistments carry out a min of 3 years of their first 5 year engagement posted to a ship to include the recruit training period.

    But the problem being that major changes as suggested will upset the status quo in bot Seniors Rates and Officers to a degree that i would be unworkable or unofficially blocked.
    MEO May be the manager but they are also an engineer so that they can be retained for everyone interests and contribute back into those coming behind them. In the same way that they may be an instructor in x, y and z. It means than for some there will be a way of providing better conditions for their families and retaining their skills in the NS.

    The big advantage being that they are already expert in the Exact equipment and the vessels, where as a DE isn’t.

    Not 100% sure if the NS are doing apprenticeships or TTS these days.

    I’m not suggesting that all techs should be commissioned rank or that all techs should be Commissioned as they progress.

    Do we need a new rank structure? IMHO no just more doing

    The NMCI is a double edged sword, IMHO it is the SSC return for investment that is the issue.

    CPO is a SNCO. Army SNCOs are commissioned as Captains (equivalent to Lt (NS)).

    I’m not suggesting massive CFR NS courses run every year. Maybe 5 CFRs every 5 years especially to fill tech specifically MEO appointments.

    Is the time now? No, why?

    There aren’t enough techs as is so promoting them out isn’t going to help that unless it meant that the retirement age was higher (it’s probably lower). The time for this was really the 2008-2010 period. Hopefully NS manning will be fixed in the next 10 years

  4. #579
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    The big advantage being that they are already expert in the Exact equipment and the vessels, where as a DE isn’t.
    Not really as you take out a Chief ERA, thats what his qualification is.. an ERA.. not an Engineer, DEs can be converted a trained quicker than backfilling vacancies created by CFRS once you lose one to the management side you need back fill.

    Do we need a new rank structure? IMHO no just more doing
    Rank structure among Techs to be a paygrade as opposed to having to commission guys to improve their conditions which in reality is what promotion is all about.

    CPO is a SNCO. Army SNCOs are commissioned as Captains (equivalent to Lt (NS)).

    You need to be promoting guys from PO rank and earlier if you are going to CFR, a ERA with a degree is not automatically an MEO and will need to bed in, thus shortening his longevity in the role.

    As Tech officers? When the NS needs MEOs to put operational units back at sea, to manage maintenance of ships alongside, to instruct and manage TTS/apprentice training
    Never know a EO to train classes of recruits but then again if you were to stream the intakes directly into the different branches there would be a requirement for same
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  6. #580
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    In a historic sense there was always a tendency for those involved in equipping the PDF with a skills base to offload structures and systems in favour of a ready made solution from civilian 3rd Level Insts. or Universities. The major loss was that inducted personnel had a civilian ethos which by and large wasn't replaced in a deep militarising training programme. We got rid of the Apprentice School and didn't sustain or modernise front edge capabilities in any of the support services such as Aer Corps and Naval Service. We are now confronted by the cyber world and world contagion, and in the latter matter prepared for the eventuality by closing down medical facilities and a coherent staff. What we do and what we've always done is based on the theory that " there will be no fire tonight".
    In 1989/1990 a few of us were tasked to draw up a new organisational structure for the Naval Service . At that time we were a seven ship navy plus the Diving School and emerging units created by satellite and digital technologies. If I remember rightly the strength figure deemed needed was in the region of 1200. Since then we have stricken 4 ships and added 6 new ships without a realistic adjustment to required Establishment. On the basis of plus two ships we needed to add at least another 4 crew equivalent to give an Establishment figure of 1380. The Tables were designed to give strength requirement for each ship type so that an increase / decrease in ships numbers would see an automatic adjustment in those strengths. Likewise the Seagoing Replacements Table was to be adjusted in a similar manner allowing two crews for each ship. The organisational Group had a preference for a higher crew Replacement ratio at three crews for each ship. The fact that current strength is below 1000 is a matter of deep concern for operational certainties.

  7. #581
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    In 1989/1990 a few of us were tasked to draw up a new organisational structure for the Naval Service . At that time we were a seven ship navy plus the Diving School and emerging units created by satellite and digital technologies. If I remember rightly the strength figure deemed needed was in the region of 1200. Since then we have stricken 4 ships and added 6 new ships without a realistic adjustment to required Establishment. On the basis of plus two ships we needed to add at least another 4 crew equivalent to give an Establishment figure of 1380. The Tables were designed to give strength requirement for each ship type so that an increase / decrease in ships numbers would see an automatic adjustment in those strengths. Likewise the Seagoing Replacements Table was to be adjusted in a similar manner allowing two crews for each ship. The organisational Group had a preference for a higher crew Replacement ratio at three crews for each ship. The fact that current strength is below 1000 is a matter of deep concern for operational certainties.
    Did you also look at the 3 crew 2 ship model?

  8. #582
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    I’ll have to dig out the special report on the AC & NS to see the size of the fleet (if it was 7 or 8) but they were working off 1.3 crews per ship in the flotilla plus all the shore side support to allow for the rotation.

  9. #583
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    In 1989/1990 a few of us were tasked to draw up a new organisational structure for the Naval Service . At that time we were a seven ship navy plus the Diving School and emerging units created by satellite and digital technologies. If I remember rightly the strength figure deemed needed was in the region of 1200. Since then we have stricken 4 ships and added 6 new ships without a realistic adjustment to required Establishment. On the basis of plus two ships we needed to add at least another 4 crew equivalent to give an Establishment figure of 1380. The Tables were designed to give strength requirement for each ship type so that an increase / decrease in ships numbers would see an automatic adjustment in those strengths. Likewise the Seagoing Replacements Table was to be adjusted in a similar manner allowing two crews for each ship. The organisational Group had a preference for a higher crew Replacement ratio at three crews for each ship. The fact that current strength is below 1000 is a matter of deep concern for operational certainties.
    If we work back from the current figure of 887 then we have enough crew for 5 ships, is my maths correct?

  10. #584
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    If we work back from the current figure of 887 then we have enough crew for 5 ships, is my maths correct?
    Close enough, about 5, pressurised by recruit training, and branch courses plus PNCO's.

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  12. #585
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    Close enough, about 5, pressurised by recruit training, and branch courses plus PNCO's.
    The fault has to lie with the pundits in DOD and those that have acquiesced with recruitment strategy for technical apprentices in particular. The PDF needs an Apprentice school in order to imbue a service ethic into apprenticeship training. As far as all recruitment and retention is concerned there must be a mix of good pay, and up to date living conditions and facilities. There also needs to be a quota system to leave Service for all ranks and / or trades. DOD expenditure is too low and leads to imbalanced decisions such as barrack closures causing congestion elsewhere. Failures in Equipping and re-equipping units is weakening output capability. Our PDF expenditure needs to be in the order of 3bn per annum to reach modern standards and stop the present regression.
    Last edited by ancientmariner; 4th August 2020 at 00:04.

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  14. #586
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    The Problem with the Army apprentice school was multi-faceted. Firstly you recruited child soldiers, most without leaving certs. Then you put them through a military school system, requiring all the staff that that command structure brings when better and more relevant training could have been provided in civvy street instructors, on block release. You treated the apprentices like dirt for the duration of their apprenticeships, marked out as lowest of the low with the promise of a technical appointment at the completion of training. Then On completion of training, you change T&C so that the apprentice who started as a Trainee ERA or EA arrives in Haulbowline fully qualified only to be told "No EA or ERA vacancies, you'll be an A/Mech instead, no tech pay. By the way, you are on duty in the Engine Control room tonight. Also, we need you to rig up lights for when we go at anchor for the local regatta. By the way, my house needs to be rewired, when can you fit it in?/ My car needs new shocks, I have the parts, can you fit it when you get a chance.
    No, there isn't any hope you will get tech pay as an EA/ERA, sure you aren't doing the job.
    And so it went on, until the former apprentice notices he can get twice the money and half the abuse on Civvy street and won't have to pay for his own tools and PPE. He happily pays back the cost of his training to go as subby on a nearby building site/maintenance at a nearby Pharma plant where he recoups the cost of buying himself out from his first six months overtime.
    Meanwhile a civvy spark/mechanic who didn't make it into the AAS, but managed to train up on his own time in FAS, applies for a DE EA/ERA competition, enters as a P/O ERA, in charge of the same former apprentices he would have trained with had he gone to AAS.

    You may wish to blame the DoD, but many of what I mention above actually happened, and the DoD had nothing to do with it. The Air Corps treated their apprentices far better than the NS or the Army treated theirs, but most of the Army apprentices managed to get appointments that kept them working office hours in the various base workshops, and on graduation went to a unit relevant to their skillset, and weren't dumped into a Line unit "until a technical vacancy arose".
    If these people had been treated properly, they would have been well suited to operating a Naval Specific apprentice school. But they left before most had 12 done. The best you can hope for is the current arrangement in NMCI, where willing participants take part in high quality technical training with the best of facilities, and return to their normal duties on completion of block release.
    I have many friends who attended the AAS, many Navy, some Army. Everyone hated apprentices, and the Army apprentices (in majority) hated the Navy apprentices. This rivalry was encouraged by instructors. Most former AAS graduates find great delight knowing that not a brick of the AAS remains in place, except for the main gate.
    It's dead. Leave it buried.
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  16. #587
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    The pay for those on TTS is probably also at least double that of a DF apprentice

  17. #588
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    The Problem with the Army apprentice school was multi-faceted. Firstly you recruited child soldiers, most without leaving certs. Then you put them through a military school system, requiring all the staff that that command structure brings when better and more relevant training could have been provided in civvy street instructors, on block release. You treated the apprentices like dirt for the duration of their apprenticeships, marked out as lowest of the low with the promise of a technical appointment at the completion of training. Then On completion of training, you change T&C so that the apprentice who started as a Trainee ERA or EA arrives in Haulbowline fully qualified only to be told "No EA or ERA vacancies, you'll be an A/Mech instead, no tech pay. By the way, you are on duty in the Engine Control room tonight. Also, we need you to rig up lights for when we go at anchor for the local regatta. By the way, my house needs to be rewired, when can you fit it in?/ My car needs new shocks, I have the parts, can you fit it when you get a chance.
    No, there isn't any hope you will get tech pay as an EA/ERA, sure you aren't doing the job.
    And so it went on, until the former apprentice notices he can get twice the money and half the abuse on Civvy street and won't have to pay for his own tools and PPE. He happily pays back the cost of his training to go as subby on a nearby building site/maintenance at a nearby Pharma plant where he recoups the cost of buying himself out from his first six months overtime.
    Meanwhile a civvy spark/mechanic who didn't make it into the AAS, but managed to train up on his own time in FAS, applies for a DE EA/ERA competition, enters as a P/O ERA, in charge of the same former apprentices he would have trained with had he gone to AAS.

    You may wish to blame the DoD, but many of what I mention above actually happened, and the DoD had nothing to do with it. The Air Corps treated their apprentices far better than the NS or the Army treated theirs, but most of the Army apprentices managed to get appointments that kept them working office hours in the various base workshops, and on graduation went to a unit relevant to their skillset, and weren't dumped into a Line unit "until a technical vacancy arose".
    If these people had been treated properly, they would have been well suited to operating a Naval Specific apprentice school. But they left before most had 12 done. The best you can hope for is the current arrangement in NMCI, where willing participants take part in high quality technical training with the best of facilities, and return to their normal duties on completion of block release.
    I have many friends who attended the AAS, many Navy, some Army. Everyone hated apprentices, and the Army apprentices (in majority) hated the Navy apprentices. This rivalry was encouraged by instructors. Most former AAS graduates find great delight knowing that not a brick of the AAS remains in place, except for the main gate.
    It's dead. Leave it buried.
    There is probably some truth and some story in your description of the AAS. I was both a school officer , training officer, and was never aware of any policy to short change apprentices as all that came were L/ rates in their trade within months and were PO rank within a year. The exceptions were Carpenters, Electrical, and RRM's who had a L/rate rank in their trade and could only be promoted to fill a vacancy and those vacancies grew with the increasing fleet. Rigging lights at times, and flags is usually a whole crew job supervised by the EA as he has custody of the light arrays. If some did a nixer it usually involved payment and was within his own divison, and within his ambit to complain to his CO through his divisional officer if he felt compromised or unwilling to do such requests. The Service is a disgrace if such was the Norm but so also it was a mistake to civilianise military training and rid the Forces of the AAS and Clancy barracks. I put it on record that neither I or anyone I know hated apprentices, as technicians they were revered aboard ship and held a certain relationship with the Command for keeping things running. Closing technical facilities has to be recommended by those in Authority and sanctioned by the DOD. It 's coming down to making life easier by shifting formative education to a system that has no Service ethic . If what you say is true then maybe there should be a COI to validate or otherwise all rumours.

  18. #589
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    There is probably some truth and some story in your description of the AAS. I was both a school officer , training officer, and was never aware of any policy to short change apprentices as all that came were L/ rates in their trade within months and were PO rank within a year. The exceptions were Carpenters, Electrical, and RRM's who had a L/rate rank in their trade and could only be promoted to fill a vacancy and those vacancies grew with the increasing fleet. Rigging lights at times, and flags is usually a whole crew job supervised by the EA as he has custody of the light arrays. If some did a nixer it usually involved payment and was within his own divison, and within his ambit to complain to his CO through his divisional officer if he felt compromised or unwilling to do such requests. The Service is a disgrace if such was the Norm but so also it was a mistake to civilianise military training and rid the Forces of the AAS and Clancy barracks. I put it on record that neither I or anyone I know hated apprentices, as technicians they were revered aboard ship and held a certain relationship with the Command for keeping things running. Closing technical facilities has to be recommended by those in Authority and sanctioned by the DOD. It 's coming down to making life easier by shifting formative education to a system that has no Service ethic . If what you say is true then maybe there should be a COI to validate or otherwise all rumours.
    I appreciate what you say, but it's fair to say that most of the AAS graduates are now happily earning the civvy salary and wouldn't be inclined to fight the DF system again. Of those I knew who went through the system, from the mid 80s to early 90s, none are still serving, all are approaching or are 50 and the last would have left on completion of contract about 10 years ago. There are other priorities in their lives now.
    While you say that most were L/rates within months, there was a period when they came down from Naas and weren't even made A/EA or ERA! Mech branch yes, but not at the appointment they were promised when they signed the dotted line. By the time they got their EA/ERA grades, they had little interest in heading off to Kilworth for a few weeks doing Tactics and COFD while someone else took their appointment at sea.
    I'm sure you or your colleagues had no dislike for apprentices, but there was an Anti-Navy ethos amongst other apprentices in Naas, and this was not dealt with by staff there. We must remember that it took an unpopular study by a serving DF officer for the DF to reluctantly accept there was a tradition of bullying within the force, and in the 20 years since, some who served at the time still say his report was an exaggeration, and refuse to accept what was the norm.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    The fault has to lie with the pundits in DOD and those that have acquiesced with recruitment strategy for technical apprentices in particular. The PDF needs an Apprentice school in order to imbue a service ethic into apprenticeship training. As far as all recruitment and retention is concerned there must be a mix of good pay, and up to date living conditions and facilities. There also needs to be a quota system to leave Service for all ranks and / or trades. DOD expenditure is too low and leads to imbalanced decisions such as barrack closures causing congestion elsewhere. Failures in Equipping and re-equipping units is weakening output capability. Our PDF expenditure needs to be in the order of 3bn per annum to reach modern standards and stop the present regression.
    The latest "Trade" shortage has stopped the departure of a ship on carrying out it's operation order. Train more people to GMDSS level and use officer/nco to operate the outwards/inwards comms on board until matters can be resolved.

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    Latest report makes it sound like they were short a PO/RRT.
    With so many vital sensors aboard it isn't just a question of training more operators.
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    Latest report makes it sound like they were short a PO/RRT.
    With so many vital sensors aboard it isn't just a question of training more operators.
    If it breaks down send one by road or call-in a civilian on call radar man. The costs may squeeze attention if they have to have contracts permanently with repair staffs from manufacturers lists.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    If it breaks down send one by road or call-in a civilian on call radar man. The costs may squeeze attention if they have to have contracts permanently with repair staffs from manufacturers lists.
    Not as straightforward as that. Ships don't sail without a po/rrt. End of.
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    Not as straightforward as that. Ships don't sail without a po/rrt. End of.
    Not sure if anyone knows but can a ship sail with an A/RRT or L/RRT? I know the track to PO is rapid for them but if they are waiting on PNCO or a Standards course?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Auldsod View Post
    Not sure if anyone knows but can a ship sail with an A/RRT or L/RRT? I know the track to PO is rapid for them but if they are waiting on PNCO or a Standards course?
    I think (open to correction) they are only EA until they specialise and are promoted. Hopefully "A/Tel" (username not rank) will be able to enlighten us. Last time I checked there were no seagoing RRT below the rank of PO, and PO/RRT have always been scarce, 10 years or more ago there was only 15 in the NS. It's a particular set of skills, their progression used to be army (CIS Workshops) until qualified, not sure if it's the same these days.
    Not to be confused with the PO/Comop.
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    I think (open to correction) they are only EA until they specialise and are promoted. Hopefully "A/Tel" (username not rank) will be able to enlighten us. Last time I checked there were no seagoing RRT below the rank of PO, and PO/RRT have always been scarce, 10 years or more ago there was only 15 in the NS. It's a particular set of skills, their progression used to be army (CIS Workshops) until qualified, not sure if it's the same these days.
    Not to be confused with the PO/Comop.
    Electrical Artificers and Radio Radar Technicians are two different streams. They may work in harmony on areas where systems meet. EA's are Electrical Branch and RRT's are belonging to Comms Branch . The former do electrical power and distribution the latter keep radar, radio, and all associated systems running. There may be elements of gun control ascribed to each since I left. Comops do the operators role , visual signalling, and intership/shore communications.

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    The PO/RRT has a more important role lately in the days of satellite communication and a networked fleet. He/She is also responsible for maintenance of electronic navaids, and as all ships now use ECDIS, there is a bit more pressure on.
    That's before mentioning the most important device on the ship.... The TV...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Auldsod View Post
    Not sure if anyone knows but can a ship sail with an A/RRT or L/RRT? I know the track to PO is rapid for them but if they are waiting on PNCO or a Standards course?
    A/RRT and L/RRTs can and do go to sea as part of their training. Trainee RTTs can go to PO about as quickly as they can get loaded on the relevant career courses.

    A/RRTs and L/RRTs do go to sea as part of their training and as understudy where required. The at sea appointment is of course for a PO/RRT.

    I was just wondering if the appointment could be filled on a temporary basis for a patrol by sailor who is fully qualified but not yet a PO.

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  31. #599
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    As the RRT at sea is a day worker they do other jobs, as they don't do watches. Can an LS do the job of a boarding PO? I think the legislation covering them is rank specific in some cases. I know the new customs act specifies PO. Not sure if NS acting as fisheries officer has the same restriction.
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  32. #600
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    Latest report makes it sound like they were short a PO/RRT.
    With so many vital sensors aboard it isn't just a question of training more operators.


    No, a PO/Commop was the issue.

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