Watch Officers’ training success

From Jersey Coastguard
24th March 2023

Two Ports of Jersey Watch Officers have successfully completed a Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) training programme and have now moved onto the next stage of their qualifications.

After induction training at the Maritime Operations Centre, Watch Officers Nathan Elms and Will Jackson have learned about the commercial shipping industry, radio procedures and port safety. This was followed by a local knowledge element, after which they had to demonstrate how their newly gained skills apply to VTS operations in Jersey.

Harbour Master, Captain Bill Sadler, presented them with certificates of achievement and additional stripes. This marks the end of Nathan and Will’s VTS Operator training and the start of their formal coastguard training programme.

Captain Sadler said: “Nathan and Will have worked hard to complete this training programme and I congratulate them on their dedication. They are now moving onto the next and more challenging stage of their training, which will see them gaining the skills needed by coastguards.”

Nathan Elms said: “Completing the VTS training feels like a great achievement and a major milestone in not only my journey as a watch officer but my career as a whole. I am very grateful to Ports of Jersey for giving me this opportunity and I’m excited for the year ahead, training to gain my Coastguard Mission Coordinator qualification with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.”

Will Jackson said: “Having now completed the vessel traffic services qualifications, I’m looking forward to the busy summer season and the diverse challenges of aiding the safety and efficiency of navigation in the port and sea areas we look after. Working alongside qualified coastguard officers, and regular Search and Rescue exercises, will support the next step in my training, toward His Majesty’s Coastguard qualifications.”

The two officers will now work towards their Coastguard Mission Coordinator qualifications, which incorporate knowledge of the Maritime Search and Rescue industry, radio procedures, coastguard theory and practice, nautical knowledge, search planning fundamentals and Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Principles (JESIP).

Training typically lasts 12 – 18 months, depending on the availability of courses at the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Fareham.

Jersey Coastguard