Towing vessel inspection fatigue

Don’t let your guard down. I have noticed many in the towboat industry are suffering from Subchapter M fatigue. Understandably, many are sick of the constant hype and have become desensitized at best, and disgusted at worst, at the mere mention of Subchapter M. 

I have deliberately backed off from bringing it up myself, but the industry should not totally let down their guard down when it comes to the new towing vessel inspection rule. Currently, according to the regulatory agenda, the expected publish date for the Subchapter M Final Rule is still March 2015. 

In anticipation of the possibility that Subchapter M will become final in 2015, I will be presenting a talk entitled “Subchapter M — Top 10 Things You Need to Know” at the Pacific Marine Expo in Seattle on Nov. 19. Or you can join me for a panel discussion on the same topic at the International Workboat Show in New Orleans on Dec. 3.

If you haven’t had a chance to go wade through the proposed rule, these presentations are your opportunity to get the highlights. If you’re already well versed on the issue and are suffering from Subchapter M fatigue, the talks are a chance to get back in tune, just in case.

About the author

Kevin Gilheany

Kevin Gilheany is a marine consultant and owner of Maritime Compliance International in New Orleans. He works with companies to help increase profitability through improved compliance and management systems. Gilheany is a retired U.S. Coast Guard marine inspector, certified marine surveyor and auditor, and crew endurance management expert. He has also provided contract training to the U.S. Coast Guard, was an adjunct instructor of maritime security at Tulane University’s Homeland Security Studies Program, and has contributed to marine industry publications. He can be reached at or

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