Marine Engineering Technician
Marine engineering technicians maintain, repair and overhaul ships and other vessels.
What does a Marine Engineering Technician do?
Marine engineering technicians maintain, repair and overhaul ships and other vessels. They may also help to maintain offshore oil drilling platforms and associated equipment.
As a marine engineering technician you would:
- carry out tests to identify faults
- repair electronic, hydraulic and mechanical equipment
- overhaul older vessels and replace ageing or superseded equipment
- maintain and update navigation and communications systems on vessels
- operate underwater craft to inspect undersea pipelines or equipment
- inspect and maintain offshore drilling platforms
- providing engineering support on board a dive support vessel
- maintain weapons systems, radar and sonar on Navy vessels and warships.
Key skills and interests
To become a marine engineering technician, you would need:
- to enjoy practical activities
- problem-solving ability
- a thorough understanding of marine engineering
- IT skills
- the ability to read technical drawings
- communication skills
- an understanding of safety procedures and regulations
- good teamwork skills.
Working hours and conditions
As a marine engineering technician you would be expected to work a set number of hours per week. At sea, these would usually be long hours, followed by extended periods of time on offshore leave.
Marine engineering technicians work in shipyards on passenger liners and ferries, cargo and freight ships, research vessels and offshore platforms. Marine engineering technicians may spend long periods of time at sea, or away from home. Conditions on board ships and offshore platforms can be rough and you would work in all types of weather.
How to become an Marine Engineering Technician?
Entry Level Education
To become a marine engineering technician you would usually need to complete an apprenticeship in an Australian Maritime Safety Authority approved trade, such as fitter and turner/machinist, diesel fitter or electrical fitter. This would be followed by training to earn a certificate of competency as an engineer watchkeeper. Generally, employers require a junior secondary school certificate or equivalent.
Employment opportunities for marine engineering technicians are expected to grow at an average rate.
The boom in the cruising industry has increased the need for marine engineering technicians to maintain engines and equipment on these ships. As a greater volume of international cargo comes in and out of Australian ports, more marine engineering technicians will also be needed to help run these vessels. Opportunities may also exist to work on offshore drilling platforms.