MCA Marine Engine Operator License (MEOL)
Written by Yachting Pages
Last updated: 23/01/2018
If you’re looking to progress as a yacht engineer, you may consider obtaining an internationally recognised MCA qualification to help you in landing your dream job or next position as a more senior engineer aboard a superyacht.
This guide is for yacht engineers who have hold an AEC Approved Engine Course Certificate, or for those who hold an eligible amount of previous engineering experience in another sector.
What is the Marine Engine Operator License (MEOL)?
The Marine Engine Operator License (MEOL) is second qualification of the MCA Engineering Officer training scheme. The qualification follows the Approved Engine Course (AEC) and can help those who wish to take the Yacht4 Certificate to progress to chief engineer.
To obtain the MEOL, an oral examination is taken whereby applicants will be required to demonstrate familiarity and proficiency in numerous areas of a yacht engine. The course typically costs between £150 and £250 and must be taken at an MCA-approved training centre.
Yacht engineers with a MEOL qualification can become a chief engineer on any commercial or privately operated yacht and sail-training vessel smaller than 750kw. The qualification also greatly enhances the chances of achieving a job aboard a larger superyacht.
What’s involved in the Marine Engine Operator License (MEOL)?
The MEOL is an oral exam where applicants will be required to demonstrate knowledge and proficiency in the following areas:
- Routine associated with taking over and accepting a watch or period of duty during UMS/Bridge Control operation
- Routine associated with handing over to the following watch or duty period during UMS/Bridge Control operation
- Routine associated with handing over to the following watch or duty engine operator
- Machinery space fire-fighting arrangements
- Safety precautions to be observed during a watch or period of duty and immediate actions in the event of a fire or accident
- Preparing main machinery, steering system and auxiliary equipment for sea. Testing plant and equipment
- Routine pumping operations of fuel oil and fresh water
- Bilge pumping operations
- Use of oily water separator and precautions to be observed to prevent environmental pollution
- Operation of auxiliary heating boilers including combustion system
- Preparing, starting, coupling and changing over alternators or generators
- Immediate actions necessary in cases of electric shock
- Location and rectification of common faults in main machinery, steering systems and auxiliary equipment
MEOL course prerequisites
All MEOL students must:
- Be 18 years old and over
- Hold a current ENG1 medical fitness certificate (or equivalent)
- Have completed the compulsory STCW 95/2010 course
- Have 36 months of service as dual-deck/engineer officer whilst holding an AEC or 24 months’ service as yacht engineer whilst holding an AEC
- Hold a Notice of Eligibility (NOE) from the MCA
Applying for a Notice of Eligibility (NOE) from the MCA
To complete the final oral exam, you will first need a Notice of Eligibility (NoE). This document is issued once the MCA has evaluated your suitability.
To be issued with a Notice of Eligibility (NOE) you must:
- Have completed 33 months’ approved seagoing service in an engine department, inclusive of nine-months seagoing service under the training scheme in the engine room of vessels of at least 750 kW, six-months service as the first assistant to the engineer officer in charge of the watch, while undertaking watch keeping or Unmanned Machinery Space (UMS) duties
- Have completed an MNTB Training Record Book (TRB)
- Have completed a workbook supporting your TRB
- Have evidence of acceptance to an approved training and education program meeting the standards specified in section A-III/1 of the STCW code
The form can be downloaded from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) website and must be returned with original copies of all your supporting documentation: Sea-service testimonials, STCW certificates, exam certificates and ENG1 to prove that you are eligible.