Subchapter M: Towing Operators Streamline Compliance by Adopting Electronic Logs

The Inland Towing Industry will mark the halfway point toward Subchapter M implementation on July 19, 2017. For the vast majority of towing vessel owners and operators, this past year has been an exercise of “wait and see.” Operators have been working towards developing a properly structured Towing Safety Management System (TSMS), to then secure a Third Party Organization-issued TSMS Certificate.We anticipate seeing significant activity in the next 12-18 months on Subchapter M implementation, inspection, and certification. To help operators stay informed and on track, MarineCFO has published a series of webinars led by senior industry experts. These are free and available for viewing at addition to these webinars, we have published A Guide to Subchapter M, a simplified guide on achieving USCG compliance. Download available for free at U.S. Coast Guard has recognized six independent firms and several Classification Societies as Subchapter M Third Party Organizations (TPO) with delegated authority to conduct required audits and issue TSMS certifications on behalf of the U.S. Coast Guard. MarineCFO has established a partnership program with TPOs called the Shipmate Program which enables these organizations to better serve towing operators through the use of MarineCFO’s Vessel 365 electronic log and record keeping capabilities. Vessel 365, our cloud based compliance and electronic record keeping solution, allows towing vessel owners and operators to take the components of their organized TSMS, and digitize the contents, with full audit control and procedures, for replication and data input at the vessel level. Vessel 365 does not require a constant internet connection and uses smart replication techniques to send data to shore when a connection is available. With the anticipated heightened implementation activity through December 2018, “MarineCFO is ready and willing to meet the industry’s needs with our Vessel 365 product along with the support staff to provide excellent service after the sale,” says Laura Martin, VP of Client Services.For more information on MarineCFO and its full suite of maritime specific compliance, operational, management and tracking solutions, contact us at
MarineCFO’s Vessel 365 exceeds all the SubChapter M recordkeeping requirements both as a Towing Vessel Record and as an alternative TSMS recordkeeping solution. Because Vessel 365 stores SubChapter M mandated “objective evidence” our solution helps minimize the towing operators’ exposure to Jones Act litigation. Statutory entries for chronological vessel activities, personnel, safety, fire systems, navigation, assessments, nonconformities, & document management are all included in the Vessel 365 feature set.