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MARS Time at Sea

Comahawk

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I have a quick question that has been bothering me for the last few weeks here at BMOQ. Basically, I want to know, from a serving MARS Officer, how much time per year you can expect to be at sea. I know this varies depending on what ship you are posted to, but in general I just want a ballpark figure.

I ask as I am considering changing trades if it is a ridiculous amount of time, such as six months per year, which is what I have been told in the past.

Thanks in advance for any help given, and please don't post speculations, as they just add to the confusion.
 

Nemecek

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This question has been asked many, many times.

Short answer, there is no ballpark figure. It depends on many things, like the state of readiness of the ship you're posted too, what's going on in the world, fuel budgets, etc.

There are many topics already on this. Try using a google search of "Sea Time", "MARS officers", "MARS Sea time", etc.

Although, I find it a little bit curious how you're in BMOQ now, and you didn't research your chosen trade before signing on the dotted line.
 

Comahawk

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The situation when I signed was significantly different than the situation I am in now. In hindsight I was very short sighted, which has worked against me.
 

gcclarke

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Commanding Officers abhor unqualified MARS Subbies ashore the same way nature abhors a vacuum. If you happen to, between the completion of your MARS IV course and the granting of your CofC II qualification (the one that lets you get promoted to Lt(N)), be posted to a ship that isn't sailing much, due to refits or just a lax schedule, you can rest assured that the NavO and the CO will conspire to get you farmed out to other ships that will be at sea.

So, while the sailing schedule for an individual ship may vary, while you're still a Bridge Watch Keeper trainee, I wouldn't expect to get anything in the lower end of the sailing days range. That having been said, six months of sea time would be a lot unless you happen to be lucky enough to be posted to a ship that is being deployed on operations. Or maybe just a really busy high readiness ship. In the former case, I would expect more sea days for that particular year, what with the actual deployment, and all the training and whatnot beforehand.

Edit: Never mind, that was just someone else with a name that starts with a C. My bad. As for the question you posted in that other topic that got deleted, with regards to whether or not a marriage can survive this, obviously that depends upon the marriage. Many people are able to make it work. Some aren't. Some wouldn't have made it anyways, but we can't really sort those out.

As for your request not to post speculations, it's kind of hard to do that when you're asking us to speculate on the amount of sea days you might get in the future. :)
 

Lex Parsimoniae

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Comahawk said:
I have a quick question that has been bothering me for the last few weeks here at BMOQ. Basically, I want to know, from a serving MARS Officer, how much time per year you can expect to be at sea. I know this varies depending on what ship you are posted to, but in general I just want a ballpark figure.

I ask as I am considering changing trades if it is a ridiculous amount of time, such as six months per year, which is what I have been told in the past.

Thanks in advance for any help given, and please don't post speculations, as they just add to the confusion.
Regulations are in place to cap sea time at a maximum of 150 days per year although this can be exceeded in rare circumstances.  Very few people approach this maximum ever.  In my personal case, I have been MARS for 18 years and have 16 years of "sea time" which equates to being posted to an operational ship/sub.  I would estimate that I have between 1000 and 1200 days at sea.  Your mileage may vary.
 

Ex-Dragoon

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Lex Parsimoniae said:
Regulations are in place to cap sea time at a maximum of 150 days per year although this can be exceeded in rare circumstances.  Very few people approach this maximum ever.  In my personal case, I have been MARS for 18 years and have 16 years of "sea time" which equates to being posted to an operational ship/sub.  I would estimate that I have between 1000 and 1200 days at sea.  Your mileage may vary.

There are quite a few MS and below that surpass that figure every year.
 

Lex Parsimoniae

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Ex-Dragoon said:
There are quite a few MS and below that surpass that figure every year.
How?  Sea-shore ratios are closely watched by Career Managers and ships don't spend anywhere near that amount of time at sea.  Even continuous pier head jumps would not lead to surpassing that figure 'every year'.
 

Ex-Dragoon

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Lex Parsimoniae said:
How?  Sea-shore ratios are closely watched by Career Managers and ships don't spend anywhere near that amount of time at sea.  Even continuous pier head jumps would not lead to surpassing that figure 'every year'.

Not as closely watched as you may think, these days the CMs care more about filling sea going billets rather then maintaining a sea shore ratio...there are quite a few of the operator trades (in particular NES OPS and NCIOPS) doing Jetty Jumps. I know of 8 of them.
 
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aesop081

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What exactly does "Jetty Jumps" refer too?

Coming back from deployment on one ship and immediately being sent back out with another ship due to personel shortages.
 

hold_fast

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While I understand the needs of the CF and understand my obligation to them, is it possible to refuse a Jetty Jump if you're already over the 150 days?

Not because I want to sit at home, but because my girlfriend would kill me if I came home after being out for a few months or longer, only to turn around and go right back out.
 

Neill McKay

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hold_fast said:
my girlfriend would kill me if I came home after being out for a few months or longer, only to turn around and go right back out.

I hate to say it, but she's going to have to get used to the fact that hard-sea tradesmen are not always at home...
 

hold_fast

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N. McKay said:
I hate to say it, but she's going to have to get used to the fact that hard-sea tradesmen are not always at home...

Yeah, I know she will. As will I.

The recruiting office seemed to fail at mentioning the amount of sea time someone will have each year. They either shrug their shoulders and say "well, it depends...", or they give you some kind of estimate that is far below reality.

When I applied, and what I said in my interview that I was aware of, was maybe about a month each year, with some day, weekend, or short 1-2 week long trips peppered throughout the year, and about a 6 month tour every 3 to 5 years.

It doesn't seem like that's the case. However, I'm of course still moving forward, regardless of how long the CF requires me. Being passionate about something means enduring the parts of the deal that aren't as enjoyable. (Not that being out travelling the world on a Canadian ship is not enjoyable. It's the being away from the girlfriend I live with, spend every day with, and having her be left alone without anyone to turn to if something happened, as her family is in a completely different province.)
 

Pat in Halifax

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Para 3 "GENERALLY SPEAKING" is not too far off the mark. This depends on your trade, available $$$s in the Defence Budget and of course world events. Keep in mind, you join the Navy, you go to sea - that is what it is all about. If you are not at sea, you are training to be at sea.
The thing I tell new staff at the School - It is EVERYONE's responsibility to see those grey things go out the harbour - that is our mandate - If a ship fails to sail for whatever reason, each of us must carry a bit of the responsibility for that fact - even if it is minute.
 

Neill McKay

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hold_fast said:
Yeah, I know she will. As will I.

If it helps, communication with a deployed ship has improved immensely in the last number of years, e.g. e-mail is now available much of the time.
 

Lex Parsimoniae

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hold_fast said:
When I applied, and what I said in my interview that I was aware of, was maybe about a month each year, with some day, weekend, or short 1-2 week long trips peppered throughout the year, and about a 6 month tour every 3 to 5 years.
60-120 days at sea per year is normal for most ships.  Keep in mind that you won't be posted to a ship every year either as you will rotate ashore for courses and staff positions.
 

Comahawk

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Thank you for the information Lex, it is nice to get someone with first hand experience to give a rough idea what the job is like. Given this information, I think I will be initiating a change to become a Log Officer, hopefully I can stay as a naval Log O at least.
 

KrazyHamburglar

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Keep in mind that Log Os still require ship postings... but the postings are a lot shorter in time than the MARS.
 
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aesop081

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Comahawk said:
Given this information, I think I will be initiating a change to become a Log Officer, hopefully I can stay as a naval Log O at least.

If 60-120 days at sea per year is too much, i'm currious as to what you expectations of being in the Navy were ?
 

gillbates

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that said, can one request for extra days at sea?

because honestly, I'd need could use the extra pay...
 
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aesop081

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gillbates said:
that said, can one request for extra days at sea?

because honestly, I'd need the extra pay...

Sea pay is a fixed rate. If you are in a position in receipt of sea duty allowance, you get paid the prescribed rate regardless of the number of days actualy spent at sea.
 
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