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BP Vessels of Opportunity

BP’s vessels of Opportunity program has been closed for over a month, but as oil continues to threaten Mobile Bay, the Mississippi Sound, and the Florida Panhandle, BP and it’s point man on this program Parsons Corporation have been actively seeking new vessels to enroll in the program beginning around the first of June. The number of boats here in the local harbor enrolled in the program has ballooned from two to over a hundred in the last week. And this seems to be repeated in harbors along the Northeast Gulf.

To qualify for the Vessels of Opportunity Program there are some minimum requirements:
U.S. Coast Guard dock side inspection.
Meet crew requirements for given vessel’s size.
Minimum 4 hour training class administered by Parson’s
They are trying very hard to give locals first shot at these programs.

Many participating in the program have been asked to pass a simple physical and a drug screen, though apparently not everyone.

Pay rates have been widely reported as follows:
Rates are $200.00 a day for an 8 hour work day for all crew members (captains and deckhands) plus a vessel fee of $3,000.00 for a vessel greater than 65 feet; $2,000.00 for a vessel greater than 45 feet to 65 feet; $1,500.00 for a vessel greater than 30 feet to 45 feet; and $1,200.00 for a vessel less than 30 feet. Captains may pay deckhands additional fees out of their vessel fees if they so choose.

BP say in there most up to date news release that some crews may be paid more based on their scheduling, and that crews working an assigned night shift will be paid for twelve hours, though I am told at least locally, there are currently no night operations.

The simplest way to apply is to call 281-366-5511. Yeah, I know, why isn’t it a toll free number? I sent BP an email, but I got a feeling they got bigger things on their plate.

I will attempt to keep an up to date list of upcoming Vessels of Opportunity training classes for Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, and Louisiana. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comment section below and I will attempt o get an answer from the local Parson’s people. Good Luck!

In an earlier post we discussed whether the BP Vessels of Opportunity program was playing favorites, that post is can be found at VOOP playing Favorites?

While the Daily Beast asserts that many yachts and pleasure craft of the rich have have been brought into the program over working charter boats and fisherman, I have to say that a little checking on the Mississippi Gulf coast at least did not seem to bear that out. On the other hand it could be that we just don’t have that many yachts. Either way, if interested please continue to call the Vessel of Opportunity number at 288-366-5111. It can be difficult to get through the paperwork but if need be contact your local marina and find where Parson’s is running their operations out of and come on down and talk with them.

  1. admin permalink

    June 10 & June 17. Vessles of Opportunities training sessions. St Mary fisherman, captains, boat owners and deckhands can attend 1-4 training sessions.

    Morgan City High School
    2400 Hemlock St
    Morgan City, La.

    2 Sessions each at 9am & 3pm.

    Each session is free and lasts a minimum of 4 hours. Classes are limited in size, so space will be available on a first-come, first served basis.

  2. admin permalink

    From the Mobile Press register: June 11th

    Beginning Saturday, BP PLC has agreed to stop using boats registered to out-of-state residents in the Vessels of Opportunity program in the waters surrounding Bayou La Batre, State Rep. Spencer Collier said today.
    Collier, R-Bayou La Batre, said the agreement came after extensive conversations with BP officials and the Alabama Department of Environmental Management. He noted that BP has promised to employ only boats registered to state residents, with an emphasis on commercial fishing and charter vessels.

    • Jgb permalink

      Better check dog river boats 3/4 rec. Fishermen 1/2 them don’t have a clue stop atop dog river bridge at 2:00 pm and see for ur self!!!

      • fishqueen permalink

        our boat has been held there for fuloughs. It’s a charter/commercial boat from Florida. Our family is a working fishing family. Don’t always assume you know the whole story.

  3. admin permalink

    Training: Vessel of Opportunity – A new training session has been scheduled for 1:00pm Saturday June 12 at the Apalachicola City Hall.

    There is space available for this class, but everyone must pre-register with Vessels of Opportunity at 1-866-279-7983.

    People who are not registered will not be admitted!

    The following BP Training sessions are scheduled at the Apalachicola City Hall:

    Wednesday June 16 8;00am,1;00pm 6;00pm
    Thursday June 17 8;00am,1;00pm, 6;00pm

    Wednesday June 23 8;00am,1;00pm, 6;00pm
    Thursday June 24 8;00am, 1;00pm, 6;00pm

    All participants must be pre-registered and have MOB numbers. People who are not registered will not be admitted.

    Registration may be arranged through Vessels of Opportunity by phoning 1-866-279-7983

  4. admin permalink

    Local training sessions have been scheduled for residents interested in becoming employed for the response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Residents interested in working on a beach clean-up crew or as a deck hand on a vessel responding to the spill can attend this free training. Training organizers on site will provide information on how to seek employment in these fields.

    Each location will feature two training sessions per day with the morning training at 9:00 A.M. and the afternoon training beginning at 2:00 P.M. The training location schedule is as follows:

    The Larose VFW Hall (located at 2322 VFW Ave., just off West 23rd St. in Larose) will host training sessions on Tuesday, June 8, and Tuesday, June 15.

    The BP Annex (located at 5703 Hwy. 56 in Chauvin) will host training sessions on Wednesday, June 9, and Wednesday, June 16.

    The Grand Isle Community Center (located at 3811 Hwy. 1 in Grand Isle) will host training sessions on Saturday, June 12, and Saturday June 19.

  5. I have been looking for phone numbers to contact someone about working on cleaning this mess up.I have a bobcat with a 5foot buck that I can use if needed.I cant afford to do it without compensation.While the big wigs at BP get million dollar bonuses every year.I have a family at home to sapport

  6. Vicperdido permalink

    Anyone know when and where the next classes will be held for the vessels of opportunity program near the Pensacola area, and who and the contact number?

  7. Terry Horne permalink

    Have been unable to regisster for VOO, called the numbers and talked to a lot of people. I live in Orange Beach, Al. Any help would be appreciated.

  8. Heather Mcdowell permalink

    I just need to find out the required size of vessels. You say amount for vessels under 30 but Im still not clear on what size is excepted to meet standards. What size is to small?

  9. Jane Strauss permalink

    I do not have a vessel however, I want to be a part of this effort. I am a recent UF graduate with a degree in Animal Biology. I have experience in both research and small animal clinical sciences (references upon request), poses an excellent work ethic, and am willing to move wherever need be. To my knowledge, there is no website for crew inquiries. This posting is simply to advertise my availability for potentially a full-time crew position should any recently recruited vessels need strong and capable workers. My contact information is as follows:

  10. Jeffery Newsome permalink

    Im a fishermen on the gulf coust I woud like to be in the progam but it is not evey get in the sistoum how to

    • admin permalink

      I know, I know. Apparently BP is making some changes to it’s vessel of opportunity program. Look, they don’t want out of work fisherman on the 6:00 o’clock news talking about not getting hired, so keep trying.

  11. randy speed permalink

    called the voo # last week and believe i have 1 boat registered but didnt have the mob card at the time,since then have taken the class and was wondering if i should call back and give the number or just wait on them to call we are mississippi residents and lived and fished here for 30 yrs……my boat reported oil in the bay of stlouis yesterday at 8am called the coast gaurd and the bp # and the news.. as of 730 pm not the first responder came we were the only boat around and i know for a fact there is no less than 50 vessels of oppurunity working out of pass christian .all they had to dod was connect the boom

    • admin permalink

      Yeah, I watched some of that drama from the Bay Saint Louis bridge last night, it went right under the booms in any case, but still. Run down by the Pass harbor and talk with the Parsons folks down there. They seem really helpful.

  12. Joesph Schneider permalink

    Hello, I too would like to sign up with a boat that needs a dependable deckhand. I am currently working the 12 hour night shift on the beach picking up tarballs. I would rather be actively in the water getting the oil before it hits the beaches. I already have the Yellow PEC card and a BP White Identification Card along with taking the Hazwoper 40 class. What I need is a Captain without the crew to go out every day and work. I do not need off a single day for the next 6 months if that is what is needed as I just want to work.

    If anyone can help get me to someone that will hire me that would be greatly appreiciated.

    I live in Pensacola but will travel or temp relocate for any long term Deckhand job.

    Joesph Schneider

  13. michelle savoy permalink

    hello i am resident of timber ridge in the pass. we are despretly trying to get a job on the clean up .the spill has crippled our bussiness and are just trying to pay the bills….we have two boats that are ready and 2 captains and 6 deckhands that have taking the mob course..i have been to the millinni lauch and they sent me to canal road who sent me to woolmarket who sent me to biloxi..and i am not any smarter after all those stops…this gulf coast is our whole life and it is sad to see what happened yesterday, we went so long without it, thought it may pass by….just really trying to find out if this is run on the ”good ole boy” system or can the person who dosent know anybody get a job also.

  14. Artmc permalink

    Any new training dates coming up?

  15. I have taken the 4 hr haz mat course and hold a current PEC card along with my captains liscense and have 2 boats ready for work. I just need to be activated to go to work ( have crew that already has pec cards) .

    • Paul permalink

      How do I apply to get my Pec card?
      I have th hazwhoper 24
      I am been ready to work for 2 weeks and still not hired for work

  16. Tamara Torres permalink

    We were trying to find out if they are still looking for boats. We signed up but have not heard anything.

  17. Bryan White permalink

    I have called bp numerous times to try and qualify for the vessels of opportunity program but to no avail. If you have any information on training classes and how to get signed up in alabama, please post it or email me back. i have a 225 ft Carolina Skiff and would love to be a part of this program.

  18. Bryan White permalink

    25 ft Carolina Skiff SORRY!!! Typo

  19. Tony Vari permalink

    I have 2 USCG captains with deck hands, 2 Large airboats 20ft and 18ft. Do you know where airboats are being used and who I need to contact to go to work. Thank You!

  20. Elizabeth McCormack permalink

    I just want to work!!! dont care if it is on beach clean up or deck hand, can pass drug test or background check!! Live in Mobile 2512953456

  21. Tony Vari permalink

    We have 2 captins with twic cards and haz mat certs. 1- 24 ft and 1 – 19ft shallow draft pwer boats ready for work. Looking to get in the 4 hr training class in Apalachicola on the 23rd or 24th of June please help!

  22. S. Sanders permalink

    Have a captain willing to put me to work but need my yellow card. Can anyone tell me where classes are being held? I am in Okaloosa county but will drive anywhere to get. Please help! Need to work…

  23. Bryan White permalink

    Any new training dates for alabama?

    • admin permalink

      Still working on training dates, Will post when they become available.

  24. Marine enterprise permalink

    I have a 30ft platoon barge, made to pump up to 600 gal/m. specialize for inland waters. ready for service. 115hp mercury, 4 strokes, have contract engineer license with hazemat endorsement.
    My name is Bill Cunha and I can be reach at 209-770-4840. Can send documents if required.

  25. Rob permalink

    I have a 115′ Aluminum 150 Passenger Vessel, converted ex crew boat, that is laying in Orange Beach, Alabama. Would like to put it to work, may need crew.

    • admin permalink

      My, if someone at BP turns and says “I think we’re going to need a bigger boat”, I gues I know who’ll I tell them to call. But seriously have you talked with the Parsons or Bp folks, there has got to be a need for boat that size to ferry people or equipment somewhere?

    • james e rice permalink

      I’m an osv construction supervisor and it seems our next contracts have backed out.I’ll be willing to take any needed classes and work any shifts/hours as my income is already decreasing and soon to cease.I have built and been on and around boats my whole life.Also anyone needing onsite welding repair or outfitting give me a call anytime at 251-554-5090.I have a super work crew and we can get any job done from building 250ft osv’s to small welding repairs.

  26. mark mclean permalink

    I just want to work!!! dont care if it is on beach clean up or deck hand, can pass drug test or background check!! Also, my partner has an 18 foot salt water fishing boat that has been inspected by the coast guard, and the boat is unsinkable. We oth want to work but we need to take all the classes, and I cannot find any dates/times for the classes. Willing to work in La, Miss, AL, or florida. I just need info to go forward. Mark 229-894-1198

    • admin permalink

      Most voop classes are on hold as they figure out what to do. As far as hazwoper classes, try any of the companied listed on the job pages., almost all will offer you hazwoper training if they are willing to hire you. DON”T PAY FOR HAZWOPER TRAINING OUT OF YOUR OWN POCKET>

  27. mark mclean permalink

    Email me at

  28. L Roper permalink

    Does anyone know where the next class for Vessels of Opportunity is going to be held in Panama City?

  29. Skye Necaise permalink

    Any trainings available any time soon?

  30. Skye Necaise permalink

    any trainings for mississippi available?

  31. Heather T permalink

    I live in Mobile al. I’m interested in helping for the VOO. My husband and I have a boat. We are tryin to find training classes. Any help would be appreciated.2516441563. Would be willing to pick up on the beach also.

  32. Art G permalink

    I want to work!!!!Does anyone know how to get through the Vessel of Opportunity gate keepers, or how to get in contact with Parsons. I have my MOB #, Yellow Card , 40 Hr Hazwoper, 8 Hr Hazwoper refresher, 100 Ton Captains License, Merchant Mariner Document with PIC Tankerman Endorsement, Dangerous Liquids, TWIC, STCW, a 27′ Carolina Skiff with a new 200 Hp Four Stroke sitting Pensacola commercial registration, Florida Charter license,sitting in Pensacola, and no calls in 5 weeks. What gives.any help would be greatly appreciated.

  33. J Best permalink

    i have been a com. shrimper 35 years. now what? my sales are cut in half. and the bills keep coming!!!!

  34. I have a aluminum landing craft on a trailer.

  35. ted bishop permalink

    i have a 55ft shrimp boat. i have sent in every thing they have requsted! sales are down most of the areas i work are closed as of today. I have called just trying to get a mob number, nothing yet,3 weeks intoo this, i was told ya have to have a mob number to get into a class. who knows! maybe the next step is a lawyer, here there’s small boats all over chactahatcee bay im in freeport fl ( north of destin fl) one boat working outta freeportso the god ole boy system must be in place

  36. Captain Larry permalink

    Oil Spill Response Captain for Hire

    Spill response Captain’s position running your 20-50’ boat (inshore or near shore)

    – 100 Ton Master near Coastal License (since 1982)
    – HAZWOPER 40 (current)
    – PEC Card “BP MC252 – Marine”
    – PEC Card MOD-3
    – TWIC Card, STCW 95 and MROP (Marine Radio Operator Permit)
    – Commercial Assistance Towing Endorsement
    – Random Drug Consortium Program (Current)
    – American Professional Captains Association (APCA), Member

    If I can be of service, please contact me for a RESUME.

    Capt. Larry

  37. Kenny permalink

    I see that SEA SCHOOL is offering classes for HAZWOPER…
    1-800-237-8663 ASK for LEONARD.

    Classes in Bayou la Batre, Al. and La. and Fla.

    I took mine there.

  38. My captian has contacted mobile 4x about getting me in the 4hr deck hand class with no response, I was there when he called He also ask about 40hr hazwoper, I,m trying to get in gulf coast commuity college. PLEASE HEIP This over 2 1/2 weeks THANKS FOR YOUR HELP!

    • admin permalink

      Mike, I’ll do a little research then email later today. Sorry so long getting back to you. If I get the forums page up and running, I’m hoping I can get some others to help with some of this. Maybe some of the folks that want to volunteer could help contact BP on some of these worker and VOOP issues for you all.

  39. Brent Breeland permalink

    As soon as the VOOP reopens I will be interested in leasing a 22ft AquaSport CC bayboat w/ 200hp Yamaha Saltwater Series II motor, registered in MS. Looking for a captian & crew who need a boat. Must have all required credentials & have taken all required classes.
    Contact me at 601-441-6670 or by email at

  40. cody suter permalink

    is there any one hiring in texas or are there any training classes available. if any one needs a extra set of hard working hands my email is and my cell number is 713-373-1940. call any time

  41. L Fisher permalink

    Looking for work for a father and son team. I have a 19′ Carolina Skiff with a 90hp Merc and electric trolling motor. I can get into the “hard to get spots” (8″Draft)

  42. I would like to work . Have a 22 ft Bay boat w/ 225 outboard. Can get in 11 inches of water . Have Coast Guard OUPV license and TWIC card. Live in South Carolina , didnt know if they were hiring out of state since now the government is saying wages will be deducted from lawsuits . Just curious if there is work to help out?

  43. xXmikeTigXx permalink

    I’m trying to open forum but sometimes there are no images on it :(

    • admin permalink

      I wondered why I couldn’t get anybody to use the darn thing. Let me play with it for awhile.

  44. Blake permalink

    I am very interested in a clean up job. I worked with The Army Corps of Engineers as a deckhand and have my yellow and CPR cards. I live in Mobile, AL and was born and raised here. I have a deep respect and love for our Gulf. My number is 251-709-2939, thank you!

  45. shane permalink

    i work at an outboard sales/repair shop.. people have beeen buying 2 and 3 of or 24 foot comercial boat for oil spill work.. have more sold than company has built.

  46. shane permalink

    also i seen on bp site or linked off of cant remember but had class times and dates for ms la but fla has no voo at this time is what i have read

  47. pat wiggins permalink

    I have a 19 foot flat bottom boat that can easily go into shallow water. Instead of making a claim with BP, I would rather put the boat to work.

  48. Rena permalink

    I’m interested in helping with the cleanup but can’t seem to figure out how to apply, if anyone has any information that may help me please reply.

  49. Ashley permalink

    I’m trying to find MOD 3 class in louisiana. Help would be greatly appreciated.

  50. Breeseeadmill permalink

    Hi !!! Good job!

  51. michael permalink

    i have done my edh but cant get the certificut till i hav sea time in any chance of getting on a ship

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