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(3) In ordinary weather, as a general rule, as soon as the boat officer steps out of his boat at the gangway, he should order the coxswain to shove off and lie off the quarter. If, however, he simply has a brief report to make or message to deliver to the officer of the deck, he may leave his boat at the gangway (provided other boats are not approaching), make his report, ask permission to shove off, and leave immediately.
(4) If there is a strong tideway, or if he expects to be detained on board for some time, he should ask permission for his boat to haul out to the boom; and if the delay is likely to be long enough to make it worth while, he should ask permission for his crew to come on board-a privilege that is usually much appreciated by the men, who thus have an opportunity to see old shipmates, take a smoke, etc.
(5) In this connection the attention of young officers is invited to the importance of treating their men with all due and proper consideration. If boat officers thoughtlessly leave their boat crews lying off the quarter in a tideway, or in excessively hot or cold weather, and otherwise subject them to unnecessary exposure or discomfort, it can not but react against the interests of discipline and efficiency.
(6) When ready to leave a visited ship, the boat officer should request the officer of the deck to have his boat manned or called alongside, but he should in no case give the orders himself, unless specially invited to do so-as is sometimes done when the officer of the deck is much occupied.
(7) When the boat Officer must absent himself from his boat, as, for example, to call upon a consul, or do other duty on shore, he should give his coxswain positive orders concerning the duties to be performed during his absence.
(8) On his return to his ship, the boat officer shall report the completion of his duty to the officer of the deck. If the boat is no longer required, he will see that it shoves off and pulls out to the boom; or if it is to be hoisted, he will see the necessary preparations made and report when the boat is ready, unless the officer of the deck excuses him from this duty.
(9) A boat officer has general charge of the boat, but when carrying commissioned officers the senior line officer has authority to give directions, and if need be to take command; since by Navy Regulations the senior line officer in a boat is responsible for its management and safety under all circumstances.
(10) When ordered on boat duty the boat officer should remember the men's meal hours, and, if there is a likelihood of the boat not returning in time, he should ask the officer of the deck to have their meals saved.
(11) Boarding duty.-A frequent duty of a boat officer is boarding. Every ship keeps a boarding book, which should always be carried on boarding duty. In this book is entered the following routine information: Name of vessel, nationality, name of captain (if man-of-war, also obtain rank of captain or senior officer of group of ships); where from; kind of passage; special incidents of voyage; men-of-war sighted; probable date of departure, and where bound; besides this, any other information which might be of value or interest. Frequently information as to date of commission of the senior officer, length of service on station, etc., is of value in determining the proper interchange of courtesies; in such cases this information should be obtained. The boarding book may be taken on board a merchant steamer and filled out, but when boarding a foreign manof-war the boarding book should be left in the boat out of sight, and the information entered after leaving the ship. Ordinarily boarding calls on foreign men-of-war are usually of a purely courteous nature; therefore, unless the boat officer has a special message for the captain of the vessel, he should inform the officer of the deck that he was sent to present the compliments of his commanding officer and to offer his services. The officer of the deck of the boarded vessel will then be guided by his own instructions as to whether the boarding officer shall see the captain or not. If he states that the captain requests to be excused, the boat officer obtains the information which is desired, and requests permission to leave the ship.
(12) If doing guard duty, or if sent on board the senior ship, a notebook is to be carried to record verbal orders which the boat officer may receive. This notebook shall be carried on board the senior ship and the orders recorded immediately they are received.
136. In delivering a message, always first present the compliments of the officer from whom the message comes, then deliver the message.
DUTIES OF COXSWAIN. 137. (1) The coxswain of a boat should be perfectly familiar with everything relating to the care and handling of his boat and be competent to instruct his crew in all details of general service or drill.
(2) He is responsible to the officer in charge of the boat for its cleanliness and readiness for service, and he should constantly keep himself informed as to the condition and completeness of the boat equipments, reporting all deficiencies to the boat officer.
(3) He is responsible for the appearance and behavior of his boat crew and that they always pull properly and conduct themselves in a seamanlike manner.
(4) Coxswains and boat crews should remember that they represent their ship, and they should therefore be taught to take a pride in their own appearance and in that of their boat. The efficiency and smartness of a ship's boats and boat crews generally reflect most clearly the tone of the ship.
(5) "The coxswain is to be careful that his boat crew is always properly dressed, paying particular attention to the following points:
(a) Hats and caps properly worn with ship's name square to the front, and no hair showing on the forehead below the hat or cap.
(6) That the brims of white hats are never turned down unless necessary to shield the eyes from prolonged exposure to the sun.
(c) That grommets are always worn in blue caps, except in windy weather, when he will direct that all grommets be removed.
(d) That trousers are never turned up, except in bad weather.
le) That the men of the boat crew are dressed alike as regards oilskins, but oilskins are not to be worn unless it is actually raining.
(5) That all members of the crew are in uniform in regard to footgear; that is, either that they all wear shoes or go barefooted.
(g) That in cold weather the men have their overcoats at hand.
(6) Owing to the constant use of power boats in port, and their consequent greater liability to become soiled, coxswains must devote particular attention to the neat and shipshape appearance of their boat and boat crew.
(7) The coxswain of a power boat is especially responsible that the crew and enlisted passengers sit down in their proper places, that they do not sit on the gunwale, and that the men outside the canopy conduct themselves in a seamanlike and proper manner in extending salutes.
(8) Coxswains of power boats shall devote particular attention to the proper handling of the canopy curtains. When curtains are not required, they will have them neatly rolled and stopped up, and when in use they will be neatly stopped down to the washboard. It is not shipshape to stop down one corner of a side curtain, but when running into a head sea, the coxswain may frequently find it necessary to lower the curtain forward, while it remains stopped up along the sides. Similarly it is frequently necessary to haul down the curtains on one side and leave them furled on the other. Under all circumstances, when the curtains are in use they must be neatly stopped down, as nothing is more slovenly than canopy curtains hanging loosely and flapping to the wind.
(9) Coxswains of power boats must see that towels or clothing are never hanging in the boat when she is called away for service.
(10) Çoxswains of power boats will require the stern man to devote particular attention to the appearance of the stern sheets of the boat. Cushion covers shall be kept neat and clean, the lantern filled, trimmed, polished, and the globe cleaned so that it will give a bright light. The boat flag, when not in use, is to be kept neatly rolled on its flagstaff and triced up overhead, not hanging loosely from flagstaff, where it presents a slovenly appearance and interferes with passengers. When the boat is called away for the use of commissioned officers, the stern man will spread the boat cloth neatly in the stern sheets of the boat, and see the foot cloths, or ladder (if used), on the proper side of the boat.
(11) When boats are called away, coxswains will go in the boat over the boom, will see that the crew is in the boat and everything is ready, and then drop down to the gangway. The coxswain then reports to the officer of the deck, or the boat officer, that the boat is at the gangway ready for service, and in the absence of a boat officer, receives his orders, which he must make sure that he clearly understands.
(12) On his return to the ship he will report that orders have been complied with. He will also report anything amiss that is visible from outside the ship, such as wind sails which require trimming, ports to be squared, anything hanging over the side, or clothes being in improper places. He will see his boat properly hauled out to the boom.
(13) The crew shall not be allowed to leave the boats on shore without proper authority. If necessary for any member to leave the boat temporarily, the coxswain will report the fact to the officer of the deck immediately on his return to the ship.
(14) The corswain shall never permit smoking in his boat during daylight, except when on detached service, surveying duty, or on hunting or fishing expeditions. This rule forbids smoking in boats which are permitted to go out for pleasure sailing, except when special permission is obtained before leaving the ship; but this should be granted only in unfrequented ports.
(15) When boats are ordered to moor, they are to be reported moored” by the coxswain to the officer of the deck.
CARE AND CLEANING OF BOATS. 138. (1) The coxswain is responsible that his boat and all that belongs to it is kept in good order. When anything is lost or any repairs are required, he is to report the fact to his boat officer. He is responsible that his boat davits are clean, and is to report if any gear connected with them is not in good order.
(2) Care is necessary to see that the oars are properly coppered, leathered, and marked, that they are of the correct length, and are assigned to their proper thwarts. Care should be taken at all times with the blades of the oars, as they are easily split or broken by rough handling or by treading on them.
(3) Great care should be observed to maintain an efficient set of oars, having them neither too heavy nor too light. Ensigns, pennants, staves, and trucks demand careful attention; also trailing lines, rowlock lanyards, boat hooks, and the boat equipment.
(4) Coxswains are always personally to superintend when their boats are being lowered, hoisted, or moored.
(5) Immediately that a boat is hoisted, the coxswain is to see her squared by the falls, dried out, boat gear neatly stowed, the outside cleared of all marks, the plug out (except in lifeboats at sea), and secured close to the plug hole with a lanyard. When the ship is at sea, lifeboats will habitually keep their boat plugs in.
BOAT KEEPERS. 139. (1) Boat keepers are detaile 1 by the coxswain of the boat, usually by thwarts in rotation, two man being assigned for one day, in order that they may relieve each other.
(2) Both boat keepers of a running boat clean her out during the morning watch. Boats must be in all respects ready for use by 8a. m.
(3) The boat keeper of the forenoon watch goes into his boat (when at boom) at 8 a. m., dressed in the uniform of the day.
(4) One of the boat keepers is always to be in his boat when she is at the boom, while the ship's colors are hoisted, unless ordered by the officer of the deck to come on board on account of bad weather. If ordered in on this account, they will remain on deck in sight of their boats, and watch and tend them from that position.