Crew and staff

Introduction

The Central Commission has drawn up safety rules for personnel on board vessels sailing the Rhine. These cover the qualifications of personnel, particularly the skills required of boatmasters. They also cover the manning requirements of crews. More recently, the Central Commission also introduced rules for safety personnel on passenger vessels and additional provisions concerning the expertise of crew members of inland navigation vessels fuelled by liquefied natural gas (LNG).

A navigation personnel regulation codifying these various provisions came into force in 2011. The terms of the rules, however, remain unchanged, the new regulation merely constituting a formal restructuring with a view to simplification and clarification.

The regulations are supplemented by instructions for the competent authorities in the Member States.

In order to facilitate access to the Rhine, the CCNR has implemented a policy of recognition of non-Rhine boatmaster certificates that represent equivalent qualifications (see recognition of equivalence of boatmaster certificates).

In the same vein, the CCNR has put in place a procedure for the recognition of non-Rhine service record books.

Matters concerning personnel are dealt with by the Committee on social issues, employment and vocational training (STF) (see bodies).

The labour law rules and social security rules applicable to navigation personnel differ from those covered by the abovementioned regulations (for these rules, see legal and social security issues).

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Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel

With Resolution 2010-I-8-Annex 1, the Central Commission has adopted the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel (RPN), which came into force on 1 July 2011.

The Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel includes all the existing Rhine regulations for navigation personnel. The existing regulations were comprised of three sets of regulations, namely:

  • Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel, adopted in june 2007,
  • Chapter 23 of the Inspection regulations for vessels on the Rhine;
  • Regulations for safety personnel on passenger vessels, adopted in December 2004.

These regulations have been replaced by the RPN. Most of the rules, however, remain unchanged, since the new regulation merely constitutes a regulatory restructuring designed to ease the reading of Rhine regulations.

The Regulation is structured as follows:

Title I: General provisions relating to all aspects of the regulation
This section sets out the definitions and general rules governing the adoption of temporary requirements or service instructions.

Title II: Manning requirements
This section sets out the manning requirements (qualifications, rest periods and minimum crew on board). It also contains additional requirements applicable to safety personnel required on passenger vessels and additional provisions concerning the expertise of crew members of inland navigation vessels fuelled by liquefied natural gas (LNG)

Title III: Navigation certificate requirements
This section sets out, in un-amended form, the Rhine navigation certificate regulations adopted in June 2007.

These are followed by a number of annexes, mainly containing model certificates and the list of documents issued by non-Member States that have been recognised by the CCNR as valid for the Rhine. The annexes are divided into four sections:

A: Annexes concerning crewing
This contains the model for the log-book and the model for the service record books. It should be noted that both models have undergone minor modifications. Annex A5 provides a list of the service record books issued by non-Member States that have been recognised by the CCNR as valid for the Rhine.

B: Annexes concerning physical and mental fitness
This contains the model medical certificate (formerly annex B2 of the Rhine navigation certificate regulations).

C: Annexes concerning safety personnel on passenger vessels
This contains the model certificates for safety personnel required on passenger vessels, formerly included as an annex to the Regulations for safety personnel on passenger vessels. These models have not been modified.

D: Annexes concerning navigation certificates
This section contains Rhine navigation certificate models (primary navigation certificate and radar navigation certificate), the model for the local knowledge certificate, and the list of foreign certificates recognised as equivalents to Rhine navigation certificates.

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Bodies

The purpose of the STF Committee is to deal with issues concerning crewing and professional training. Their areas of responsibility fall into three main categories:

  1. Traditional function of updating regulations: tasks connected with the adaptation of rules, concerning the Rhine only.
  2. Functions concerning the recognition of navigation qualifications: tasks in connection with the political will to open up the Rhine to the rest of Europe by means of the recognition of boatmaster certificates and service record books issued by non-Member States. Here the CCNR works closely alongside observer States and other river commissions. In particular, the CCNR has signed a number of administrative arrangements with the transport ministers of States whose boatmaster certificates have been recognised. The aim of these arrangements is to set up mechanisms for the future cooperation between the competent ministries in these States and the CCNR.
  3. Function concerning the development of training and qualifications: tasks in connection with the need to make the profession more attractive and to combat personnel shortages. Here the CCNR not only works with observer States and other river commissions, but also with other international institutions and bodies such as EDINNA. The main issues currently dealt with in this area by the commission are the adoption of the digital tachograph, streamlining the acquisition of knowledge of sectors and the more generalised use of navigation simulators for boatmaster training.

Committee Chairman: Mrs. COENEN, Commissioner for Belgian
Secretariat :Mrs. MOOSBRUGGER

Schedule of meetings

Work programme 62 KB 62 KB 61 KB

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Recognition of equivalence of non-Rhine boatmaster certificates

The adoption of Additional Protocol No. 7 on 27 November 2002 amended the Mannheim Convention to permit the recognition of non-Rhine qualifications. This means that holders of recognised boatmaster certificates or radar certificates can now operate on the Rhine, which should simplify professional obligations and contribute to the development of a large European inland navigation market.

The CCNR adopted its first decisions on the recognition of non-Rhine boatmaster certificates in 2008. Since then, the CCNR has recognised the national certificates of seven European States that are not CCNR members and those of four CCNR member States. An exact list of the recognised boatmaster certificates and certificates of fitness for navigating using radar is given in the tables below; the list is updated regularly.

Administrative arrangements were also entered into between the CCNR and the relevant States in order to establish the principle and methods of cooperation between both parties. Mutual recognition of boatmaster certificates and radar certificates is to be accompanied by mechanisms for administrative cooperation between the Rhine authorities and the authorities of the States whose certificates are recognised, in order to guarantee the equivalence in duration of the relevant certificates, develop common practices, and also implement reliable information exchange systems. To this end, the agreement makes provision for the organisation of joint meetings, and sets up mechanisms to transfer information between the various competent authorities.

National boatmaster certificates recognised as valid for navigation on the Rhine, possibly subject to additional conditions

The CCNR has recognised a certain number of national boatmaster certificates as being equivalent to the “Grande Patente du Rhin”. Additional conditions are sometimes imposed to ensure the validity of these certificates on the Rhine. These conditions mainly cover the local knowledge required on the Rhine, and renewal of the physical and mental fitness certificate, as attested by additional documents which must be presented at the same time as the national certificate.

State Name of certificate recognised as equivalent Model Additional conditions
D Schifferpatent A

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnelif they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40).
Schifferpatent B
NL Groot vaarbewijs A
voor de binnenvaart

from 12.10.2016

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must be at least 21 years old.
Groot vaarbewijs B
voor de binnenvaart
Groot vaarbewijs A
voor de binnenvaart

until 11.10.2016

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must be at least 21 years old.
Groot vaarbewijs B
voor de binnenvaart
Groot vaarbewijs I

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must be at least 21 years old,
  • they must not be over fifty (50) years old.
Groot vaarbewijs II
B Certificat de conduite/Vaarbewijs A

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front fr

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must be at least 21 years old,
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.
Certificat de conduite/Vaarbewijs B
CH Patente du Rhin supérieur

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on all or part of the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
RO Certificat de conduite A

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must be at least 21 years old,
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.
Certificat de conduite B

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CZ Certificat de capitaine de classe I (B)
(valable jusqu’au 31.12.2017)

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on all or part of the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.
Certificat de conduite de catégorie B
(en vigueur à partir du 15.03.2015)

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HU Certificat de conduite de classe A

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.
Certificat de conduite de classe B

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PL Certificat de conduite de catégorie A

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.
Certificat de conduite de catégorie A

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SK Certificat de capitaine de classe A
(Prescription de caractère temporaire du 1.08.2015 au 31.07.2018 )

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on all or part of the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.
Certificat de capitaine de classe I (B)

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AT Patente de capitaine A

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on all or part of the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.
Patente de capitaine B

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BG Patente de navigation intérieure

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  • they must provide proof of local knowledge as per the model in annex D3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel if they wish to sail on all or part of the sector between the Iffezheim locks (km. 335.92) and the Spijk ferry (km. 857.40),
  • they must present proof of their physical and mental fitness in accordance with annex B3 of the Regulations for Rhine navigation personnel when they reach the age of fifty (50), and this must be renewed in accordance with the provisions laid down in those regulations.

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National certificates of fitness for navigating using radar recognised as valid for navigation on the Rhine, possibly subject to additional conditions

The CCNR has recognised a certain number of national certificates of fitness for navigating using radar as being equivalent to the "Patente Radar du Rhin".

State Name of certificate recognised as equivalent Model Additional conditions
RO Boatmaster certificate for navigating on inland waterways using radar

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CZ Certificate of fitness for navigating on inland waterways using radar

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Modèle (valable jusqu’au 31.12.2017)

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Modèle (en vigueur à partir du 15.03.2015)
HU Boatmaster certificate for navigating on inland waterways using radar

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SK Certificate of fitness for navigating using radar

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AT “Radar” qualification indicated on boatmaster’s certificate

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Recognition of equivalence for service record books

The service record book enables the boatman to attest his physical and mental fitness, his experience in navigation, and his qualification.

The Rhine service record book is issued by the competent authorities of any CCNR member State. Up to 1 July 2011, all boatmen were required to hold a Rhine service record book to be able to work on the Rhine.

However, the Czech Republic, Poland and many of the Danube States issued service record books in a format similar to that of the Rhine service record book, and it was therefore thought to be worth recognising the validity of the non-Rhine service record books on the Rhine.

On 8 December 2010, the CCNR and the competent ministries of seven central European States (Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and the Czech Republic) signed a multilateral Administrative Arrangement, according to which the signatories agreed to recognise the service record books issued by their respective competent authorities. The Arrangement came into force on the Rhine and throughout the territories of the seven States on 1 July 2011.

All the service record books recognised by virtue of the Arrangement have a similar format.

  • They contain a section reserved for an entry on the boatman’s physical and mental fitness, which must be completed by the issuing authority, but the indications are recognised as being valid on all the waterways covered by the Arrangement.
  • The service record books also contain a section reserved for a listing of the journeys undertaken. This section is filled in by the vessel’s captain and must be presented to a competent authority for initialling every year. By virtue of the Administrative Arrangement, any competent authority, whether in a CNNR member State or in one of the States signatory to the Arrangement, may stamp the document to authenticate the information on journeys carried out. In this way, the number of years of experience accumulated by the boatman is established in an unquestionable fashion. On the basis of this, the boatman may claim a particular level of qualification.
  • The service record books also contain a section reserved for the boatman’s qualifications. All service record books covered by mutual recognition contain a page reserved for the listing of qualifications obtained in compliance with Rhine regulations. Currently, this page may only be filled in by a competent Rhine authority and the qualification listed on this page is the only qualification valid on the Rhine. To list the qualification in compliance with Rhine regulations, the competent Rhine authority takes account of the number of years of experience the boatman has, as attested by his service record book in the section described above.

This means that, since 1 July 2011, boatmen no longer have to obtain a new service record book each time they change country. They are now able to present their original service record book, as the indications shown in it concerning their physical and mental fitness and their navigation experience are valid throughout the area covered by the Arrangement.

The scope of application of the Application will probably be extended to the Moselle in the near future further to a decision on the part of the Moselle Commission.

This should go a long way to simplifying the administrative procedures imposed on European boatmen, and facilitate their access to the entire European network. Signature of the Arrangement therefore constitutes an important stage in the harmonisation of the documents required for inland navigation in Europe.

A Secretariat has been set up for the Arrangement; it is provided by the CCNR Secretariat (Ms Moosbrugger). It supplies the logistics necessary for organising joint meetings, facilitates exchanges among the contracting Administrations, manages this Internet page, and carries out any other tasks necessary for ensuring the proper functioning of the Arrangement.

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Documents

  • Administrative arrangement 224 KB 223 KB 223 KB 212 KB
  • Rhine service record book 10659 KB
  • List of the competent authorities 56 KB 53 KB 56 KB 54 KB
  • Notification of entry into force 50 KB 17 KB 50 KB 49 KB
    • Entry into force in the Czech Republic 43 KB
    • Entry into force in Hungary 48 KB 48 KB 48 KB 47 KB
  • Model for recognised service record books
    • Austrian service record book 4558 KB
    • Bulgarian service record book 255 KB
    • Hungarian service record book 57361 KB
    • Polish service record book 7816 KB
    • Romanian service record book 190 KB
    • Slovakian service record book 3438 KB
    • Czech service record book 13465 KB
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List of Examination Commissions

  • List of Rhine Patent Examination Commissions 23 KB
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Conference of the Examination Commissions

Conference of the Patent Examination Commissions of the member states of the Central Commission for the Navigation of the Rhine in Berlin on 10 November 2011

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