Shipbuilding technicians build, convert, repair and service ships and offshore platforms.
They are involved with all the mechanical and electrical aspects of work being done to vessels or equipment intended to be installed. This includes main engines, electrical generators and a variety of mechanical equipment used in modern ships.
Technicians are responsible for the accuracy of all the work carried out on board. In the case of new ships they must ensure that everything works efficiently before handing a vessel over to its new owners. This may involve travelling at sea on commissioning trials.
Shipbuilding technicians normally work a 37.5-hour week with extra payment for overtime or shift working. Performance related bonus payments may be involved to ensure that deadlines are met.
The working environment varies. They may work in a comfortable office either inland or at the port. Alternatively work may be outside or at sea installing equipment in all weathers and conditions. Conditions can be dirty, dark, oily and cold when working in a ship’s hull.
As a shipbuilding technician you would need to be:
Shipbuilding Technicians are employed in:
Opportunities exist at sea where training is provided by the Royal Navy and the Merchant Navy and entry is open to school-leavers. Onshore opportunities exist in such subjects as maritime systems technology, ship science or single discipline courses in mechanical engineering.
Worldwide travel is involved in many maritime engineering careers and there are numerous offshore locations such as the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico.
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From March 2002, the Secretary of State for Education and Skills began licensing new Sector Skills Councils - charged with boosting skills and productivity in business sectors. For information about Sector Skills Councils, their roles and responsibilities, please visit the Sector Skills Development Agency website: www.ssda.org.uk