[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 112 (Monday, June 11, 2018)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 26933-26942]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-12502]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

Coast Guard

46 CFR Parts 10, 11, and 15

[Docket No. USCG-2018-0100]
RIN 1625-AC46


Amendments to the Marine Radar Observer Refresher Training 
Regulations

AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: The Coast Guard proposes to revise its merchant mariner 
credentialing regulations to remove obsolete portions of the radar 
observer requirements and harmonize the radar observer endorsement with 
the merchant mariner credential. Under this proposed rule, an active 
mariner who serves in a relevant position for 1 year in the previous 5 
years using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes on 
vessels equipped with radar, or has served as a qualified instructor 
for a Coast Guard-approved radar course at least twice within the past 
5 years, would not be required to complete a Coast Guard-approved radar 
refresher or re-certification course in order to renew his or her radar 
observer endorsement. This proposed rule would not change the existing 
requirements for mariners seeking an original radar observer 
endorsement or mariners who do not have either 1 year of relevant sea 
service on board radar-equipped vessels in the previous 5 years or 
service as a qualified instructor for a Coast Guard-approved radar 
course at least twice within the past 5 years. Elimination of the 
requirement to take a radar refresher or re-certification course every 
5 years would reduce burden on affected mariners without impacting 
safety.

DATES: Comments and related material must be received by the Coast 
Guard on or before July 11, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by docket number USCG-
2018-0100 using the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. See the ``Public Participation and Request for 
Comments'' portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for further 
instructions on submitting comments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information about this document 
call or email Mr. Davis Breyer, Coast Guard; telephone 202-372-1445, 
email [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Contents for Preamble

I. Public Participation and Request for Comments
II. Abbreviations
III. Basis and Purpose
IV. Background
V. Discussion of Proposed Rule
VI. Regulatory Analyses
    A. Regulatory Planning and Review
    B. Small Entities
    C. Assistance for Small Entities
    D. Collection of Information
    E. Federalism
    F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
    G. Taking of Private Property
    H. Civil Justice Reform
    I. Protection of Children
    J. Indian Tribal Governments
    K. Energy Effects
    L. Technical Standards
    M. Environment

I. Public Participation and Request for Comments

    The Coast Guard views public participation as essential to 
effective rulemaking, and will consider all comments and material 
received during the comment period. Your comment can help shape the 
outcome of this rulemaking. If you submit a comment, please include the 
docket number for this rulemaking, indicate the specific section of 
this document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for 
each suggestion or recommendation.
    We encourage you to submit comments through the Federal eRulemaking 
Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. If your material cannot be 
submitted using http://www.regulations.gov, contact the person in the 
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this proposed rule for 
alternate instructions. Documents mentioned in this proposed rule, and 
all public comments, are available in our online docket at http://www.regulations.gov, and can be viewed by following that website's 
instructions. Additionally, if you go to the online docket and sign up 
for email alerts, you will be notified when comments are posted or a 
final rule is published.
    We accept anonymous comments. All comments received will be posted 
without change to http://www.regulations.gov and will include any 
personal information you have provided. For more about privacy and the 
docket, visit http://www.regulations.gov/privacyNotice.
    We do not plan to hold a public meeting but we will consider doing 
so if public comments indicate that a meeting would be helpful. We 
would issue a separate Federal Register notice to announce the date, 
time, and location of such a meeting.

II. Abbreviations

BLS Bureau of Labor Statistics
CFR Code of Federal Regulations
CGAA 2015 Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2015
DHS Department of Homeland Security
FR Federal Register
MERPAC Merchant Marine Personnel Advisory Committee
MMLD Merchant Mariner Licensing and Documentation
MMC Merchant Mariner Credential
OMB Office of Management and Budget
Sec.  Section
STCW International Convention on the Standards of Training, 
Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978, as amended
STCW Code Seafarers' Training, Certification and Watchkeeping Code
U.S.C. United States Code

III. Basis and Purpose

    The purpose of this proposed rule is to amend the radar observer 
endorsement requirements by removing obsolete portions and harmonizing 
the expiration dates of the radar observer endorsement and the merchant 
mariner credential (MMC).
    The Coast Guard is authorized to determine and establish the 
experience and professional qualifications required

[[Page 26934]]

for the issuance of officer credentials pursuant to 46 U.S.C. 7101. 
Authority under 46 U.S.C. 7101 has been delegated to the Commandant of 
the Coast Guard by Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 
0170.1(II)(92)(e). The specifics of these professional qualifications 
and the Coast Guard's evaluation process are prescribed by 46 CFR parts 
10 and 11, and the manning requirements are in 46 CFR part 15.
    Section 304 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2015 (CGAA 
2015), Public Law 114-120, February 8, 2016 (codified as a statutory 
note to 46 U.S.C. 7302), requires the harmonization of expiration dates 
of a mariner's radar observer endorsement with his or her MMC and the 
medical certificate, subject to certain exceptions.\1\ Furthermore, the 
CGAA 2015 specifies that the process to harmonize cannot require a 
mariner to renew the MMC before it expires. This proposed rule would 
meet the statutory requirement with regard to the radar observer 
endorsement. The requirement regarding the medical certificate is 
already met through policy.\2\
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    \1\ Public Law 114-120, sec. 304(c), creates an exception for 
individuals (1) holding a merchant mariner credential with--(A) an 
active Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping 
endorsement; or (B) Federal first-class pilot endorsement; or (2) 
who have been issued a time-restricted medical certificate.
    \2\ CG-MMC Policy Letter 01-18: Guidelines for Requesting 
Harmonization of Expiration Dates of Merchant Mariner Credentials 
and Mariner Medical Certificates when Applying for an Original or 
Renewal Merchant Mariner Credential. https://www.dco.uscg.mil/Portals/9/DCO%20Documents/5p/5ps/MMC/CG-MMC-2%20Policies/CG-MMC%2001-18%20Harmonization.pdf?ver=2018-03-02-071916-180.
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IV. Background

    Currently, 46 CFR 11.480 requires that a mariner with a radar 
observer endorsement complete a Coast Guard-approved radar observer 
refresher or re-certification course every 5 years to maintain a valid 
radar observer endorsement on his or her MMC. The MMC is typically 
valid for a 5-year period in accordance with 46 U.S.C. 7302(f). Under 
the current regulation, the radar observer endorsement must be added to 
the MMC. However, the course completion certificate dictates the 
validity of the radar observer endorsement. This requires the mariner 
to carry the MMC and have the course completion certificate available 
in order to demonstrate compliance with the regulations. Under current 
regulation, it is not possible to harmonize the expiration dates of the 
radar course completion certificate and the MMC.
    The Coast Guard sought comments from the Merchant Marine Personnel 
Advisory Committee (MERPAC) about harmonization. In September 2015, at 
Meeting 43, MERPAC recommended that the Coast Guard review whether 
requiring a radar refresher or re-certification course for mariners 
with relevant and recent underway service on a vessel equipped with 
radar should be considered adequate experience for renewal (MERPAC 
Recommendation 2015-56).\3\ MERPAC recommended the Coast Guard consider 
the history of the radar observer endorsement, the current state of 
radar observer training and prevalence of radar, and the concept that 
knowledge and skills will degrade with time if not used or refreshed 
through training. MERPAC also recommended the Coast Guard consider 
whether the radar observer endorsement must be on the credential.
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    \3\ See Task Statement #91 from MERPAC https://homeport.uscg.mil/Lists/Content/DispForm.aspx?&ID=805&Source=https://homeport.uscg.mil/missions/ports-and-waterways/safety-advisory-committees/merpac/task-statements-2.
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    The Coast Guard first added a requirement to prove continued 
competence in radar operation every 5 years by completing a 
professional examination or completing a Coast Guard-approved course in 
1958 (23 FR 3447, May 21, 1958). As discussed in that final rule, the 
merchant mariner license endorsement ``Radar Observer'' has its roots 
in a report by the Technical Staff of the Committee on Merchant Marine 
and Fisheries to the U.S. House of Representatives concerning the S.S. 
Andrea Doria and the M.V. Stockholm collision.\4\ That report 
recommended providing adequate training for deck officers and requiring 
certification of officers such as radar observers. The International 
Maritime Organization included a requirement for radar training in its 
International Convention on the Standards of Training, Certification 
and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978, as amended (STCW) and the STCW 
Code.\5\
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    \4\ The S.S. Andrea Doria and the M.V. Stockholm collision 
occurred off Nantucket in heavy fog at approximately 10:30 p.m. on 
July 25, 1956, and resulted in multiple fatalities.
    \5\ In response to increased marine casualties because of 
untrained mariners, the Port and Tanker Safety Act of 1978 and the 
International Maritime Organization, through adoption of STCW 
resolution 18, ``Radar simulator training'' and resolution 20, 
``Training in the use of collision avoidance aids'' developed 
training standards centered on live marine radar equipment, 
including radar simulators.
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    The Coast Guard believes that the potential for accidents 
continues, and that it is important for mariners to continue to benefit 
from training to be proficient in the use of radar as both a navigation 
and collision avoidance tool. The Coast Guard also believes that radar 
is now a commonly used navigation and collision avoidance tool. Radar 
carriage requirements, both in the United States and internationally, 
have increased in the last 60 years, and the current domestic training 
requirements have been in place for the last 35 years. Currently, 
mariners on vessels outfitted with radar maintain proficiency in the 
use of radar through its constant use to navigate and prevent 
collisions. Therefore, the Coast Guard has concluded that the current 
requirement for the completion of a radar refresher or re-certification 
course for mariners with relevant and recent service in a position 
using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes on board 
vessels equipped with radar is not necessary. Completion of refresher 
training is unnecessarily burdensome to mariners who routinely use 
radar.
    Section 304 of the CGAA 2015 requires the harmonization of 
expiration dates of a mariner's radar observer endorsement with his or 
her MMC, and prohibits requiring a mariner to renew a credential before 
it expires. In this context, the Coast Guard believes that the MMC is 
the primary credential documenting the individual's qualifications to 
perform specific functions on board a ship, and should be the point of 
alignment when harmonizing the expiration dates of a mariner's 
endorsements.
    In looking at this requirement, the Coast Guard also considered 
Executive Order 13771 of January 30, 2017, Reducing Regulation and 
Controlling Regulatory Costs, and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
Guidance of April 5, 2017, on that Executive order; and Executive Order 
13777 of February 24, 2017, Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda. 
These directives require agencies to review regulations in order to 
provide a reduction of regulatory costs to members of the public. 
Elimination of the requirement to take a radar refresher or re-
certification course every 5 years will eliminate an unnecessary burden 
on the active mariner and make harmonization possible.

V. Discussion of Proposed Rule

    In this proposed rule, the Coast Guard proposes to revise its 
regulations so that the mariner who serves in a relevant position on 
board a radar-equipped vessel for 1 year in the previous 5 years is not 
required to complete a Coast Guard-approved radar refresher or re-
certification course per 46 CFR 11.480 to renew their radar observer 
endorsement. The proposed

[[Page 26935]]

requirement for 1 year of sea service within the past 5 years is 
consistent with similar existing sea service requirements found in, for 
example, 46 CFR 10.227(e)(1), Requirements for Renewal of an MMC; 46 
CFR 11.302(c), Basic Training; and 46 CFR 11.303(c), Advanced 
Firefighting. For the purposes of this proposed rule, relevant sea 
service means having served in a position using radar for navigation 
and collision avoidance purposes on a radar-equipped vessel.
    Additionally, mariners who provide evidence of being a qualified 
instructor and having taught a Coast Guard-approved radar endorsement 
refresher or re-certification course at least twice within the past 5 
years would not be required to complete a radar refresher or re-
certification course. The 5-year interval is based on both national and 
STCW endorsement requirements that follow recognized principles and 
standards of maritime skill acquisition and retention. The provision to 
allow renewal of the endorsement by an instructor of the radar course 
is the same provision that currently exists under 46 CFR 
10.227(e)(1)(v) for MMC renewals. This provision would be applied to 
the radar observer endorsement.
    This proposed rule would eliminate the requirement to carry a 
certificate of training if the radar observer endorsement is on the 
MMC, and would allow the endorsement and MMC to expire at the same 
time.
    The Coast Guard did consider removing the radar refresher or re-
certification course requirement altogether. However, the Coast Guard 
believes that the competencies required by a radar observer would 
degrade if the mariner does not use them on board vessels or 
periodically refresh them by teaching or completing a course. The 
concept that knowledge and skills will degrade with time if not used or 
refreshed has been applied in other basic maritime training arenas, 
such as the STCW requirements for basic training and a firefighting 
refresher course every 5 years, and is a recognized factor within the 
education industry. While there are few specific studies in skill 
degradation in the maritime industry, this issue has been the subject 
of discussion for decades in other industries, including the aviation 
industry, which is very similar to the maritime industry.\6\ Also, 
radar continues to be incorporated into other shipboard systems and 
continues to change with advancements in technology. The radar observer 
must keep current with these changes through onboard utilization of 
skills or a formal course of instruction. As a result, the Coast Guard 
did not pursue removing refresher training altogether.
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    \6\ Michael W. Gillen, ``Degradation of Piloting Skills'' 
(Master's Thesis), University of North Dakota, Grand Forks (2008), 
assesses professional aircraft pilots' basic instrument skills in 
the age of highly automated cockpits. In addition to the specific 
findings related to the aircraft pilots, the document contains a 
literature review of applicable background studies concerning the 
general theory of learning related to skill acquisition, retention, 
and declination. The referenced literature includes a discussion of 
the inverse nature of practice and completion time--previous studies 
showed that the time required to perform a task declined at a 
decreasing rate as experience with the task increased. Results from 
some of these previous studies indicated a rapid rate of learning 
depreciation.
    Arthur Winfred, Jr., Bennett Winston, Jr., Pamela L. Stanush, 
and Theresa L. McNelly, ``Factors That Influence Skill Decay and 
Retention: A Quantitative Review and Analysis'', 11(1) Human 
Performance 57 (1998), presents a review of skill retention and 
skill decay literature about factors that influence the loss of 
trained skills or knowledge over extended periods of non-use. 
Results indicated that there is substantial skill loss after more 
than 365 days of non-use or non-practice. Physical, natural, and 
speed-based tasks--such as checklist and repetitive tasks--were less 
susceptible to skill loss than decision-making tasks that are 
cognitive, artificial, and accuracy-based. Collision avoidance and 
navigation using radar can be considered examples of the latter 
category.
    John M. O'Hara, ``The Retention of Skills Acquired Through 
Simulator-based Training'', 33(9) Ergonomics 1143 (1990), examines 
the loss of skills among two groups of merchant marine cadets that 
were tested for watchstanding skills immediately preceding and 
following a 9-month simulator-based training program. The mitigation 
of decay as a function of a retraining experience was also 
evaluated. The results indicated that watchstanding skills improved 
following training and declined over the 9-month retention interval, 
and that refresher training was effective in terms of skill loss 
mitigation for some skill areas.
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    In summary, the Coast Guard is proposing to continue to require 
attendance at a radar refresher or re-certification course for mariners 
seeking to renew a radar observer endorsement who do not have 1 year of 
relevant sea service in the previous 5 years using radar for navigation 
and collision avoidance purposes on vessels equipped with radar. As 
discussed earlier, mariners with radar observer endorsements who do 
have 1 year of relevant sea service within the previous 5 years and 
served in a position using radar for navigation and collision avoidance 
purposes on board a radar-equipped vessel, or who have met certain 
instructor requirements, would be able to renew the radar observer 
endorsement without completing a course. In addition, the radar 
observer endorsement would expire with the MMC, and the mariner with a 
radar observer endorsement would no longer be required to present a 
course completion certificate within 48 hours of the demand to do so by 
an authorized official.
    Following is a section-by-section discussion of the proposed 
changes.

46 CFR 11.480 Radar Observer

    This proposed rule would revise 46 CFR 11.480(d), (e), (f), (g), 
and (h). Pursuant to these changes, a current course completion 
certificate from a Coast Guard-approved radar refresher or re-
certification course in accordance with 46 CFR 11.480 would no longer 
be the only determinant of a mariner's continued competency as a radar 
observer.
    The proposed rule would revise 46 CFR 11.480 to apply the 
provisions of 46 CFR 10.227(e)(1)(v) to the radar observer endorsement. 
A qualified instructor who has taught a Coast Guard-approved radar 
observer course at least twice within the past 5 years would not be 
required to complete a refresher or re-certification course because he 
or she will have met the standards to receive a course completion 
certificate. During the course approval process in accordance with 46 
CFR subpart D, instructors are evaluated to determine whether they are 
qualified to teach the course; a qualified instructor does not need to 
complete a refresher or re-certification course.
    This proposed rule would allow mariners to use recent sea service 
in place of completing a radar refresher or re-certification course. 
Mariners able to provide evidence of 1 year of relevant sea service 
within the last 5 years in a position using radar for navigation and 
collision avoidance purposes on vessels equipped with radar would not 
be required to attend a course to obtain a course completion 
certificate.
    If the radar observer endorsement is on the MMC, then the radar 
observer endorsement is valid for the same period as the MMC. The 
validity of the MMC will coincide with the validity of the radar 
endorsement if the applicant provides the following information: (1) 
Evidence of 1 year of sea service within the last 5 years in a position 
using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes on board 
radar-equipped vessels; (2) evidence of having been a qualified 
instructor who has taught a Coast Guard-approved radar observer course 
at least twice within the past 5 years; or (3) successful completion of 
a Coast Guard-approved radar course within the past 5 years. If the 
applicant does not provide evidence of meeting the requirements for the 
radar observer endorsement, the endorsement will not be placed on the 
MMC.

[[Page 26936]]

46 CFR 15.815

    The Coast Guard proposes to revise Sec.  15.815 to eliminate the 
requirement that a person required to hold a radar endorsement must 
have his or her course completion certificate readily available. Having 
the course completion certificate available is not necessary if the MMC 
reflects a radar observer endorsement, because the radar observer 
endorsement indicates adequate training or experience demonstrated 
through one of the three methods described in this proposed rule.
    The proposed rule would revise Sec.  15.815(d) to allow the 
mariners listed in Sec.  15.815(a), (b), and (c), to sail without a 
radar observer endorsement provided that they hold, and have 
immediately available, a course completion certificate, issued within 
the last 5 years, from a Coast Guard-approved radar course. This would 
create flexibility for mariners who were not qualified for the radar 
observer endorsement at their last credential application but have 
subsequently completed a Coast Guard-approved radar course and hold a 
course completion certificate.

46 CFR 10.232

    Finally, the Coast Guard proposes to add a corresponding 
requirement to Sec.  10.232(a) so that the sea service letter indicates 
whether the vessel the mariner has served on is equipped with radar, 
and that the mariner served in a position using radar for navigation 
and collision avoidance purposes. While certain vessels are required to 
carry radar, some vessels are not required to do so, such as offshore 
supply vessels of less than 100 gross tons and mechanically propelled 
vessels of less than 1,600 gross tons in ocean or coastwise service. 
This proposed rule would ensure that mariners serving in a position 
using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes on vessels 
equipped with radar will get credit towards renewal of the radar 
observer endorsement, regardless of whether the vessel was required to 
carry radar.

VI. Regulatory Analyses

    We developed this proposed rule after considering numerous statutes 
and Executive orders related to rulemaking. A summary of our analyses 
based on these statutes or Executive orders follows.

A. Regulatory Planning and Review

    Executive Orders 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review) and 13563 
(Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review) direct agencies to assess 
the costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if 
regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize 
net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public 
health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). Executive 
Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and 
benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and promoting 
flexibility. Executive Order 13771 (Reducing Regulation and Controlling 
Regulatory Costs), directs agencies to reduce regulation and control 
regulatory costs and provides that ``for every one new regulation 
issued, at least two prior regulations be identified for elimination, 
and that the cost of planned regulations be prudently managed and 
controlled through a budgeting process.''
    This proposed rule is not designated a significant regulatory 
action by OMB under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866. Accordingly, 
OMB has not reviewed it. OMB considers this rule to be an Executive 
Order 13771 deregulatory action. See the OMB Memorandum titled 
``Guidance Implementing Executive Order 13771, titled `Reducing 
Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs' '' (April 5, 2017).
    This regulatory analysis provides an evaluation of the economic 
impacts associated with this proposed rule. The Coast Guard proposes to 
revise its regulations so that the mariner who served on board a radar-
equipped vessel for 1 year in the previous 5 years, in a position using 
radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes, is not required 
to complete a Coast Guard-approved radar refresher or re-certification 
course to renew their radar observer endorsement, as discussed in 
section V of this proposed rule. Additionally, mariners who provide 
evidence of being a qualified instructor and having taught a Coast 
Guard-approved radar endorsement refresher or re-certification course 
at least twice within the past 5 years would not be required to 
complete a radar refresher or re-certification course. Table 1 provides 
a summary of the affected population, costs, and cost savings after 
implementation of this proposed rule. The total 10-year discounted cost 
savings of the rule would be $47,678,762 and the annualized total cost 
savings would be $6,788,383, both discounted at 7 percent. We expect 
that an average of 7,037 mariners would benefit from this proposed rule 
each year. The proposed rule would result in cost savings to these 
mariners for no longer incurring the costs to complete the radar 
observer refresher course. There would be no impact to those mariners 
seeking an original radar observer endorsement or who do not have 1 
year of relevant sea service in a position using radar for navigation 
and collision avoidance purposes on board radar-equipped vessels on 
board radar-equipped vessels in the previous 5 years. This proposed 
rule would not impose costs on industry.

                                Table 1--Summary of the Impacts of Proposed Rule
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                                                           Affected
             Change                   Description         population             Costs           Cost savings
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Revise 46 CFR 11.480 (d), (e),    Revise the          Total of 35,183     No cost...........  $6,788,830
 (f), (g), and (h).                merchant mariner    mariners would no                       annualized and
                                   credentialing       longer be                               $47,678,762 10-
                                   regulations to      required to take                        year present
                                   allow mariners      radar refresher                         value monetized
                                   who are qualified   or re-                                  industry benefits
                                   instructors and     certification                           (cost savings)
                                   mariners with 1     course. Annual                          (7% discount
                                   year of sea         average of 7,037                        rate).
                                   service in the      mariners per year
                                   previous 5 years    benefit from
                                   using radar for     proposed rule
                                   navigation and      (rounded).
                                   collision
                                   avoidance
                                   purposes on radar-
                                   equipped vessels
                                   to retain their
                                   radar observer
                                   endorsement
                                   without being
                                   required to take
                                   a radar renewal
                                   or re-
                                   certification
                                   course.

[[Page 26937]]

 
Revise 46 CFR 15.815............  Remove requirement  35,183 mariners...  No cost...........  No cost savings.
                                   that a person
                                   with a radar
                                   observer
                                   endorsement must
                                   have a
                                   certificate of
                                   training readily
                                   available.
Revise 46 CFR 10.232(a)(2)......  Add requirement     35,183 mariners...  No quantifiable     No cost savings.
                                   that sea service                        cost. Cost to add
                                   letters include                         one line item to
                                   the information                         company's regular
                                   that the vessel                         update to the
                                   the mariner has                         service letter is
                                   served on is                            too small to
                                   radar equipped                          quantify.
                                   and the mariner
                                   served in a
                                   position using
                                   radar for
                                   navigation and
                                   collision
                                   avoidance
                                   purposes.
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    The proposed revisions to 46 CFR 11.480 would result in cost 
savings to those mariners who no longer would have to complete the 
radar observer refresher course.
    The proposed revisions to 46 CFR 15.815 would eliminate the 
requirement that a person holding a radar endorsement must also have 
his or her course completion certificate readily available. While the 
mariner would no longer physically have to carry the certificate, the 
mariner would still have to physically carry an MMC that reflects a 
radar observer endorsement. The costs of obtaining the copy of the 
certificate are included in the cost of the completion of the course. 
Therefore, any cost savings from these revisions are included in the 
calculations of the cost savings to the revisions to 46 CFR 11.480. 
Those mariners who do not have an MMC that reflects a radar observer 
endorsement would be allowed to sail if they hold, and have immediately 
available, a course completion certificate, issued within the last 5 
years, from a Coast Guard-approved radar course. There is no impact to 
these mariners, as they currently have to carry a certificate to show 
course completion.
    The proposed revisions to 46 CFR 10.232 would add a requirement 
that the sea service letter indicate whether the mariner served on a 
vessel equipped with radar, and if the mariner served in a position 
using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes. The 
operating companies that use service letters are already required to 
provide mariner service information. The companies would have to add a 
line item once per vessel, and then the letter would be available for 
all other mariners serving on a radar-equipped vessel using radar for 
navigation and collision avoidance purposes. The companies generally 
produce a service letter once every 5 years to provide the employees 
the documentation necessary to renew their credentials. Because the 
cost to add one line item is a minimal burden and could be included in 
the company's regular updates to the service letter, we consider the 
proposed revisions to 46 CFR 10.232 to have no additional burden or 
cost savings to industry.
Affected Population
    We expect that this proposed rule would affect mariners with a 
radar observer endorsement and mariners who would need one in the 
future. More specifically, it would affect those mariners with at least 
1 year of sea service in the previous 5 years in a position using radar 
for navigation and collision avoidance purposes on board a radar-
equipped vessel, as they will no longer be required to complete a Coast 
Guard-approved radar refresher or re-certification course per 46 CFR 
11.480 in order to renew their radar observer endorsement. It would 
also affect mariners who have served as instructors for a Coast Guard-
approved radar course at least twice within the past 5 years, the 
majority of whom hold a valid endorsement and would be included in the 
affected population. The radar observer endorsement would expire with 
the MMC and the mariner would no longer be required to carry the course 
completion certificate so that it can be presented to the Coast Guard 
upon demand.
    We used data from the Coast Guard's Merchant Mariner Licensing and 
Documentation (MMLD) system to estimate the average number of mariners 
affected by this proposed rule. The MMLD system is used to produce MMCs 
at the National Maritime Center. Table 2 below shows the radar 
endorsement data from the MMLD system used to estimate the affected 
population. The MMLD system does not have exam data prior to 2011 for 
the mariners who took the rules of the road exam to renew an MMC.

                              Table 2--Mariners Holding Radar Observer Endorsements
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                         Mariners who hold
                                                          a radar observer  Mariners who took     Mariners who
                          Year                              endorsement     rules of the road     benefit from
                                                           (current total   exam to renew MMC    proposed rule
                                                            population)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2011...................................................             37,612                488             37,124
2012...................................................             38,114                572             37,542
2013...................................................             37,011                638             36,373
2014...................................................             35,262                671             34,591
2015...................................................             34,280                716             33,564
2016...................................................             34,546                777             33,769
2017...................................................             34,076                755             33,321
                                                        --------------------------------------------------------
    Average Total Mariners.............................             35,843                660             35,183
                                                        --------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 26938]]

 
    Impacted per Year..................................              7,169                132              7,037
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The ``Mariners Who Hold a Radar Observer Endorsement'' column shows 
the number of unique mariners who, on January 1 of each year, held a 
valid MMC with a radar observer endorsement. Per Sec.  11.480, each 
applicant for a renewal of a radar observer endorsement must complete 
the appropriate Coast Guard-approved refresher or re-certification 
course, receive the appropriate course completion certificate, and 
present the certificate or a copy of the certificate to the Coast 
Guard. A radar observer endorsement is typically valid for 5 years from 
the date of completion of the Coast Guard-approved course. From 2011 to 
2017, there was an average of 35,843 total mariners with a valid MMC 
with a radar observer endorsement. The Coast Guard does not have more 
detailed information as to the expiration for each mariner's radar 
observer endorsement. Therefore, we divided the total mariners by 5 to 
estimate that an average of 7,169 mariners currently would need to take 
the radar renewal course each year (35,843 total mariners/5, rounded to 
nearest whole number).
    Under this proposed rule, the Coast Guard expects that a portion of 
the total mariners would not have 1 year of sea service in the last 5 
years in a position using radar for navigation and collision avoidance 
purposes on board radar-equipped vessels. There are some mariners who 
are inactive but still complete the requirements to renew an MMC. The 
requirements for the renewal of an MMC are in Sec.  10.227. In order to 
renew their credentials, mariners must present acceptable documentary 
evidence of at least 1 year of sea service during the past 5 years, or 
pass a comprehensive, open-book exercise that includes a rules of the 
road examination. Mariners who take the rules of the road exam are 
tracked in the MMLD database. The ``Mariners Who Took Rules of the Road 
Exam to Renew MMC'' column in table 3 shows the number of the unique 
mariners in the ``Mariners Who Hold a Radar Observer Endorsement 
(Current Total Population)'' column who took the rules of the road 
examination as part of the MMC renewal process for their existing valid 
MMC, not the number of mariners who took the rules of the road exam in 
that given year. Therefore, we used this as a proxy to estimate the 
number of mariners who did not have 1 year of sea service in the last 5 
years. Under this proposed rule, an average of 660 total mariners would 
still have had to take a radar refresher or re-certification course in 
order to maintain the radar observer endorsement. The Coast Guard does 
not have more detailed information as when each mariner took the radar 
refresher or re-certification course over the 5-year period. We divided 
the total mariners by 5 to find an average of 132 mariners would still 
need to take the exam each year (660 total mariners/5).
    We subtracted the number in the ``Mariners Who Took Rules of the 
Road Exam to Renew MMC'' column from the number in the ``Mariners Who 
Hold a Radar Observer Endorsement'' column to find the mariners who, 
under this proposed rule, would not have had to take a radar refresher 
or re-certification course when they last renewed their MMC. From 2011 
to 2017, there was an average of 35,183 mariners who held radar 
observer endorsements and had at least 1 year of relevant sea service 
during the past 5 years. This number represents the total number of 
mariners expected to benefit from this proposed rule. We divided the 
total number of mariners expected to benefit from this proposed rule by 
5 to find the average mariners that would benefit each year (35,183 
total mariners/5). This comes out to an average of 7,037 mariners per 
year that would no longer have to take a radar refresher or re-
certification course (rounded to nearest whole number).
Costs
    The regulatory changes in this proposed rule would not impose any 
costs to industry or government.
Cost Savings
    The cost savings to industry are the difference between the current 
baseline cost to industry and the cost to industry if the regulatory 
changes in this proposed rule are implemented.
Baseline Cost to Industry
    To estimate the cost savings to industry, we first estimated the 
current costs to industry. The costs to industry include the cost of 
the refresher or re-certification course, the time to take the course, 
and time and mileage costs to travel to take the course. The mariners 
incur costs for the radar refresher or re-certification course. To 
estimate the cost of the course, the Coast Guard researched and found a 
sample of course costs from five training centers that offer Coast 
Guard-approved radar refresher or re-certification courses. The cost of 
the courses ranged from $199 to $250. We took an average of the 5 
estimates to find the average cost of the courses is $228 (($199 + $250 
+ $225 + $225 + $243)/5, rounded to nearest 
dollar).7 8 9 10 11
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \7\ Maritime Professional Training, course cost of $199, found 
at http://www.mptusa.com/course/149-Radar-Observer-Recertification-Renewal.
    \8\ Compass Courses, course cost of $250, found at http://compasscourses.com/maritime-safety-training-courses/radar-re-certification/.
    \9\ The Marine Training Institute, course cost of $225, found at 
http://themarinetraininginstitute.com/ecdis-radar-recertification/.
    \10\ Calhoon MEBA Engineering School, course cost of $225, found 
at http://rro.cutwater.org/.
    \11\ Maritime Institute of Technology & Graduate Studies, course 
cost of $243, found at https://www.mitags-pmi.org/courses/view/Radar_Observer_Recertification.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We then estimated the cost of the time for the mariners to take the 
refresher or re-certification course. The 5 training centers state that 
the radar renewal course is 1-day. For the purposes of complying with 
service requirements, a day is defined as 8 hours (46 CFR 10.107, 
Definitions in subchapter B).\12\ We obtained the wage rate of a 
mariner from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), using Occupational 
Series 53-5021, Captains, Mates, and Pilots of Water Vessels (May 
2016). The BLS reports that the mean hourly wage rate for a Captain, 
Mate, or Pilot is $39.19.\13\ To account for employee benefits, we used 
a load factor of 1.52, which we calculated from 2016 4th quarter BLS 
data.\14\ The loaded wage for a mariner is

[[Page 26939]]

estimated at $59.57 ($39.19 wage rate x 1.52 load factor). We 
multiplied the loaded wage rate by the hourly burden to find the 
current cost for a mariner to take the radar renewal course is $476.56 
($59.57 wage rate x 8 hour burden).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \12\ 46 CFR 10.107, https://ecfr.io/Title-46/pt46.1.10#se46.1.10_1107.
    \13\ Mean wage, https://www.bls.gov/oes/2016/may/oes535021.htm.
    \14\ Employer Costs for Employee Compensation provides 
information on the employer compensation and can be found in table 9 
at https://www.bls.gov/news.release/archives/ecec_03172017.pdf. The 
loaded wage factor is equal to the total compensation of $28.15 
divided by the wages and salary of $18.53. Values for the total 
compensation, wages, and salary are for all private industry workers 
in the transportation and material moving occupations, 2016 4th 
quarter. We use 2016 data to keep estimated cost savings in 2016 
dollars.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We then estimated the cost for the mariners to travel to take the 
refresher or re-certification course. The radar refresher or re-
certification course must be taken in person at a training center. This 
means the mariners incur costs for time to travel to take the course. 
We estimated mileage using travel costs assumptions from the 
Implementation of the 1995 Amendments to the International Convention 
on Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping for 
Seafarers, 1978, and Changes to National Endorsements Final Rule.\15\ 
On average, a mariner commutes 50 miles to a training course one-way, 
or 100 miles round trip. The Federal Highway Administration reports the 
average commute speed for private vehicles is 28.87 miles per hour.\16\ 
We divided the average round trip mileage to the training center by the 
average commute time to find that it takes an average of 3.46 hours for 
a mariner to travel to the training center (100 miles/28.87 miles per 
hour, rounded). We multiplied this by the loaded hourly wage rate to 
find that the hourly burden per mariner to travel to the training 
center to take the refresher or re-certification course is $206.11 
(3.46 hours x $59.57).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \15\ Found at https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=USCG-2004-17914. Non-commuting driving time estimate found on page 132 of the 
Regulatory Analysis and Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis, 
located under Supporting Documents.
    \16\ ``Summary of Travel Trends: 2009 National Household Travel 
Survey'', table 27, found at http://nhts.ornl.gov/2009/pub/stt.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The mariners also incur additional mileage costs for traveling to 
the training facility to take the 1-day course, such as gas and wear 
and tear on their vehicles. We used the U.S. General Services 
Administration privately owned vehicle mileage reimbursement rate of 
$0.54 per mile to estimate this additional cost.\17\ We multiplied this 
rate by the 100 miles round trip to the training facility to estimate 
that the mariners incur a cost of $54 per mariner for the additional 
mileage costs.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \17\ Found at https://www.gsa.gov/travel/plan-book/transportation-airfare-rates-pov-rates-etc/privately-owned-vehicle-pov-rates/pov-mileage-rates-archived. We use the 2016 rate to keep 
all costs in 2016 dollars.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Table 3 summarizes the costs per mariner to take the radar 
refresher or re-certification course. Adding the cost of the 1-day 
course, the opportunity cost of time to take the course, and the 
opportunity cost of roundtrip travel time and mileage costs to get to 
the training center, we found that it costs $964.67 per mariner to take 
the radar refresher or re-certification course.

   Table 3--Costs per Mariner for Radar Refresher or Re-Certification
                                 Course
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Cost category                             Cost
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1-Day Course.................................................    $228.00
Opportunity Cost of Time (8 hours) Spent in Training Facility     476.56
Opportunity Cost of Roundtrip Travel Time to Training Center.     206.11
Mileage Costs................................................      54.00
                                                              ----------
  Total......................................................     964.67
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    To find the baseline total cost for all mariners to take the radar 
refresher or re-certification course, we multiplied the total cost per 
mariner of $964.67 by the annual average mariners who currently hold 
radar observer endorsements. As shown in table 2, we found this is an 
annual average of 7,169 mariners. Therefore, the total baseline annual 
average cost for all mariners is $6,915,719 (7,169 mariners x $964.67 
per mariner, rounded).
Costs to Industry After Implementation of the Regulatory Changes 
Proposed
    Revising Sec.  11.480 so that mariners who serve on board a radar-
equipped vessel for 1 year in the previous 5 years are not required to 
take a radar refresher or re-certification course to renew their radar 
observer endorsement would reduce the number of mariners who would need 
to take the radar refresher or re-certification course. As shown in 
table 2 in the ``Affected Population'' subsection, an average of 132 
mariners would still need to take the radar refresher or re-
certification course each year. These mariners would continue to have 
the same costs per mariner shown in table 3. Multiplying the cost per 
mariner by the average mariners that would still need to take the 
course each year, we found the total annual cost to industry that would 
remain under this proposed rule would be $127,336 (132 mariners x 
$964.67 per mariner).
Cost Savings
    To find the total cost savings of this proposed rule, we subtracted 
the costs to industry after implementation of the proposed rule from 
the baseline costs. Subtracting $127,336 from $6,915,719, we found the 
total cost savings of this proposed rule would be $6,788,383. Table 4 
shows the total 10-year undiscounted industry cost savings of this 
proposed rule would be $67,883,830. The 10-year estimated discounted 
cost savings to industry would be $47,678,762, with an annualized cost 
savings of $6,788,383, using a 7-percent discount rate. Using a 
perpetual period of analysis, we estimated the total annualized cost 
savings of the proposed rule would be $5,541,343 in 2016 dollars, using 
a 7-percent discount rate.

          Table 4--Total Estimated Cost Savings of the Proposed Rule Over a 10-Year Period of Analysis
                                         [Discounted at 7 and 3 percent]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                       Total             Total, discounted
                              Year                                 undiscounted  -------------------------------
                                                                       costs            7%              3%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1...............................................................      $6,788,383      $6,344,283      $6,590,663
2...............................................................       6,788,383       5,929,237       6,398,702
3...............................................................       6,788,383       5,541,343       6,212,332
4...............................................................       6,788,383       5,178,825       6,031,390
5...............................................................       6,788,383       4,840,023       5,855,719
6...............................................................       6,788,383       4,523,386       5,685,164
7...............................................................       6,788,383       4,227,464       5,519,577

[[Page 26940]]

 
8...............................................................       6,788,383       3,950,901       5,358,812
9...............................................................       6,788,383       3,692,431       5,202,730
10..............................................................       6,788,383       3,450,870       5,051,194
                                                                 -----------------------------------------------
    Total.......................................................      67,883,830      47,678,762      57,906,284
        Annualized..............................................  ..............       6,788,383       6,788,383
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

B. Small Entities

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601-612, we have 
considered whether this proposed rule would have a significant economic 
impact on a substantial number of small entities. The term ``small 
entities'' comprises small businesses, not-for-profit organizations 
that are independently owned and operated and are not dominant in their 
fields, and governmental jurisdictions with populations of less than 
50,000.
    This proposed rule reduces the burden on industry by removing the 
requirement to attend a radar refresher or re-certification course 
every 5 years for mariners who have 1 year of relevant sea service in 
the previous 5 years in a position using radar for navigation and 
collision avoidance purposes on board radar-equipped vessels, or for 
Coast Guard-approved radar course qualified instructors who have taught 
the class at least twice within the past 5 years. The MMC and radar 
observer endorsement is in the mariner's name and not the company's 
name, so we assume the affected mariners would receive the cost savings 
from this proposed rule. We do not have further information that any 
companies would reimburse the mariners for these costs and would 
acquire the costs savings.
    Therefore, the Coast Guard certifies under 5 U.S.C. 605(b) that 
this proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. This proposed rule reduces the 
burden associated with mariners taking the radar refresher or re-
certification course and will not adversely affect small entities as 
defined by the Small Business Administration in 13 CFR 121.201. If you 
think that your business, organization, or governmental jurisdiction 
qualifies as a small entity and that this proposed rule would have a 
significant economic impact on it, please submit a comment to the 
docket at the address listed in the ADDRESSES section of this preamble. 
In your comment, explain why you think it qualifies and how and to what 
degree this proposed rule would economically affect it.

C. Assistance for Small Entities

    Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement 
Fairness Act of 1996, Public Law 104-121, we want to assist small 
entities in understanding this proposed rule so that they can better 
evaluate its effects on them and participate in the rulemaking. If the 
proposed rule would affect your small business, organization, or 
governmental jurisdiction and you have questions concerning its 
provisions or options for compliance, please contact the person in the 
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this proposed rule. The 
Coast Guard will not retaliate against small entities that question or 
complain about this proposed rule or any policy or action of the Coast 
Guard.
    Small businesses may send comments on the actions of Federal 
employees who enforce, or otherwise determine compliance with, Federal 
regulations to the Small Business and Agriculture Regulatory 
Enforcement Ombudsman and the Regional Small Business Regulatory 
Fairness Boards. The Ombudsman evaluates these actions annually and 
rates each agency's responsiveness to small business. If you wish to 
comment on actions by employees of the Coast Guard, call 1-888-REG-FAIR 
(1-888-734-3247).

D. Collection of Information

    This proposed rule would call for no new collection of information 
under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520. The 
information collection associated with this proposed rule is the 
currently approved collection 1625-0040 (MMC Application).\18\ The 
proposed revisions to 46 CFR 15.815 would eliminate the requirement 
that a person holding a radar endorsement must also have his or her 
course completion certificate readily available. While the mariner 
would no longer physically have to carry the certificate, the mariner 
would still have to carry an MMC that reflects a radar observer 
endorsement. Those mariners who do not have an MMC that reflects a 
radar observer endorsement would be allowed to sail provided that they 
hold, and have immediately available, a course completion certificate, 
issued within the last 5 years, from a Coast Guard-approved radar 
refresher or re-certification course. There is no impact to these 
mariners, as they currently have to carry a certificate to show course 
completion.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \18\ The full title of COI 1625-0040 is ``Application for 
Merchant Mariner Credential (MMC), Application for Medical 
Certificate, Application for Medical Certificate--Short Form, Small 
Vessel Sea Service (Optional) Form, DOT/USCG Periodic Drug Testing 
(Optional) Form, and Disclosure Statement for Narcotics, DWI/DUI, 
and/or Other Convictions (Optional) Form.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The proposed revisions to 46 CFR 10.232 would add a requirement 
that the sea service letter indicates whether the mariner served on a 
vessel equipped with radar, and if the mariner served in a position 
using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes. In place 
of an indication on an application or by separate certification that a 
mariner completed a Coast Guard-approved radar observer course, a 
statement would be added to the already-required sea service letter. 
The operating companies that use service letters are already required 
to provide mariner service information. The companies would have to add 
a line item once per vessel, and then the letter would be available for 
all other mariners serving on a radar-equipped vessel using radar for 
navigation and collision avoidance purposes. The companies generally 
produce a service letter once every 5 years to provide the employees 
the documentation necessary to renew their credentials. Because the 
cost to add one line item is a minimal burden and could be included in 
the company's regular updates to the service letter, we

[[Page 26941]]

consider the proposed revisions to 46 CFR 10.232 to have no additional 
burden to industry. Therefore, the proposed revisions would not change 
the burden in the currently approved collection 1625-0040.

E. Federalism

    A rule has implications for federalism under Executive Order 13132 
(Federalism) if it has a substantial direct effect on States, on the 
relationship between the national government and the States, or on the 
distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of 
government. We have analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 
13132 and have determined that it is consistent with the fundamental 
federalism principles and preemption requirements described in 
Executive Order 13132. Our analysis is explained below.
    It is well settled that States may not regulate in categories 
reserved for regulation by the Coast Guard. It is also well settled 
that all of the categories covered in 46 U.S.C. 3306, 3703, 7101, and 
8101 (design, construction, alteration, repair, maintenance, operation, 
equipping, personnel qualification, and manning of vessels), as well as 
the reporting of casualties and any other category in which Congress 
intended the Coast Guard to be the sole source of a vessel's 
obligations, are within the field foreclosed from regulation by the 
States. See the Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Locke and 
Intertanko v. Locke, 529 U.S. 89, 120 S.Ct. 1135 (2000). Because this 
proposed rule involves the credentialing of mariners under 46 U.S.C. 
7101, it relates to personnel qualifications and, as a result, is 
foreclosed from regulation by the States. Therefore, because the States 
may not regulate within these categories, this proposed rule is 
consistent with the fundamental federalism principles and preemption 
requirements described in Executive Order 13132.
    While it is well settled that States may not regulate in categories 
in which Congress intended the Coast Guard to be the sole source of a 
vessel's obligations, the Coast Guard recognizes the key role that 
State and local governments may have in making regulatory 
determinations. Additionally, for rules with federalism implications 
and preemptive effect, Executive Order 13132 specifically directs 
agencies to consult with State and local governments during the 
rulemaking process. If you believe this rule has implications for 
federalism under Executive Order 13132, please contact the person 
listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION section of this preamble.

F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995, 2 U.S.C. 1531-1538, 
requires Federal agencies to assess the effects of their discretionary 
regulatory actions. In particular, the Act addresses actions that may 
result in the expenditure by a State, local, or tribal government, in 
the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million (adjusted for 
inflation) or more in any one year. Although this proposed rule would 
not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this 
proposed rule elsewhere in this preamble.

G. Taking of Private Property

    This proposed rule would not cause a taking of private property or 
otherwise have taking implications under Executive Order 12630 
(Governmental Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected 
Property Rights).

H. Civil Justice Reform

    This proposed rule meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 
3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, (Civil Justice Reform), to minimize 
litigation, eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

I. Protection of Children

    We have analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 13045 
(Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety 
Risks). This proposed rule is not an economically significant rule and 
would not create an environmental risk to health or risk to safety that 
might disproportionately affect children.

J. Indian Tribal Governments

    This proposed rule does not have tribal implications under 
Executive Order 13175 (Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal 
Governments), because it would not have a substantial direct effect on 
one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal 
Government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and 
responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes.

K. Energy Effects

    We have analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 13211 
(Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy 
Supply, Distribution, or Use). We have determined that it is not a 
``significant energy action'' under that order because it is not a 
``significant regulatory action'' under Executive Order 12866 and would 
not likely have a significant adverse effect on the supply, 
distribution, or use of energy.

L. Technical Standards

    The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act, codified as a 
note to 15 U.S.C. 272, directs agencies to use voluntary consensus 
standards in their regulatory activities unless the agency provides 
Congress, through OMB, with an explanation of why using these standards 
would be inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impractical. 
Voluntary consensus standards are technical standards (e.g., 
specifications of materials, performance, design, or operation; test 
methods; sampling procedures; and related management systems practices) 
that are developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies.
    This proposed rule does not use technical standards. Therefore, we 
did not consider the use of voluntary consensus standards.

M. Environment

    We have analyzed this proposed rule under Department of Homeland 
Security Management Directive 023-01 and Commandant Instruction 
M16475.lD (COMDTINST M16475.1D), which guide the Coast Guard in 
complying with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 
4321-4370f), and have made a preliminary determination that this action 
is one of a category of actions that do not individually or 
cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. A 
preliminary (draft) Record of Environmental Consideration (REC) 
supporting this determination is available in the docket where 
indicated under the ``Public Participation and Request for Comments'' 
section of this preamble. This proposed rule would be categorically 
excluded under categorical exclusion (CATEX) numbers L52, L56, L57, and 
L62 of DHS Directive 023-01(series). As such, CATEX L52 pertains to 
regulations concerning vessel operation safety standards, CATEX L56 
pertains to regulations concerning the training, qualifying, and 
licensing of maritime personnel, CATEX L57 pertains to regulations 
concerning manning of vessels, and CATEX L62 pertains to regulations in 
aid of navigation. We seek any comments or information that may lead to 
the discovery of a significant environmental impact from this proposed 
rule.

[[Page 26942]]

List of Subjects

46 CFR Part 10

    Penalties, Personally identifiable information, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Seamen.

46 CFR Part 11

    Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Schools, 
Seamen.

46 CFR Part 15

    Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Seamen, Vessels.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard proposes 
to amend 46 CFR parts 10, 11, and 15 as follows:

0
1. The authority citation for part 10 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 14 U.S.C. 633; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 46 U.S.C. 2101, 2103, 
2110; 46 U.S.C. chapter 71; 46 U.S.C. chapter 73; 46 U.S.C. chapter 
75; 46 U.S.C. 2104; 46 U.S.C. 7701, 8903, 8904, and 70105; Executive 
Order 10173; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.

0
2. Amend Sec.  10.232 by redesignating paragraphs (a)(2)(vii) through 
(a)(2)(x) as paragraphs (a)(2)(viii) through (a)(2)(xi), respectively 
and add new paragraph (a)(2)(vii) to read as follows:


Sec.  10.232  Sea service.

    (a) * * *
    (2) * * *
    (vii) For those seeking to renew a radar observer endorsement, 
whether the vessel is equipped with radar and if the mariner served in 
a position using radar for navigation and collision avoidance purposes.
* * * * *

PART 11--REQUIREMENTS FOR OFFICER ENDORSEMENTS

0
1. The authority citation for part 11 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 14 U.S.C. 633; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 46 U.S.C. 2101, 2103, 
and 2110; 46 U.S.C. chapter 71; 46 U.S.C. 7502, 7505, 7701, 8906, 
and 70105; Executive Order 10173; Department of Homeland Security 
Delegation No. 0170.1. Section 11.107 is also issued under the 
authority of 44 U.S.C. 3507.

0
2. Amend Sec.  11.480 as follows:
0
a. In paragraph (d), remove the text ``paragraph (e)'' and add, in its 
place, the text ``paragraphs (f) or (g)''; and
0
b. Revise paragraphs (e) through (h) to read as follows:


Sec.  11.480   Radar observer.

* * * * *
    (e) A radar observer endorsement issued under this section is valid 
until the expiration of the mariner's MMC.
    (f) A mariner may also renew his or her radar observer endorsement 
by providing evidence of meeting the requirements located in 46 CFR 
10.227(e)(1)(v).
    (g) The Coast Guard will accept on-board training and experience 
through acceptable documentary evidence of 1 year of relevant sea 
service within the last 5 years in a position using radar for 
navigation and collision avoidance purposes on vessels equipped with 
radar as meeting the refresher or re-certification requirements of 
paragraph (d) of this section.
    (h) An applicant for renewal of a license or MMC who does not 
provide evidence of meeting the renewal requirements of paragraphs (d), 
(f), or (g) of this section will not have a radar observer endorsement 
placed on his or her MMC.

PART 15--MANNING REQUIREMENTS

0
 1. The authority citation for part 15 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  46 U.S.C. 2101, 2103, 3306, 3703, 8101, 8102, 8103, 
8104, 8105, 8301, 8304, 8502, 8503, 8701, 8702, 8901, 8902, 8903, 
8904, 8905(b), 8906 and 9102; sec. 617, Pub. L. 111-281, 124 Stat. 
2905; and Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.

0
2. Amend Sec.  15.815 by revising paragraph (d) and removing paragraph 
(e) to read as follows:


Sec.  15.815  Radar observers.

* * * * *
    (d) In the event that a person described in paragraphs (a), (b), or 
(c) of this section does not hold an endorsement as radar observer, he 
or she must have immediately available a valid course completion 
certificate from a Coast Guard-approved radar course.

Jeffrey G. Lantz,
Director, Office of Commercial Regulations and Standards.
[FR Doc. 2018-12502 Filed 6-8-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 9110-04-P