Watercraft engineer (88L)

Watercraft engineers are primarily responsible for supervising or performing maintenance on Army watercraft and auxiliary equipment on marine vessels.

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The Army’s fleet of watercraft travel the world in support of the Army mission. These watercraft transport equipment, personnel and supplies and perform vital logistical tasks. The men and women that keep the Army’s watercraft running and ready for action is the job of the Soldiers of Military Occupational Specialty Watercraft Engineer.

After successfully completing 10 weeks of Army Basic Combat Training, you will attend Advanced Individual Training at Fort Eustis, Virginia where the Army will train you in basic electronics, hydraulics, and shop practices as well as in engine operation and maintenance. Aboard ship, your maintenance and repair training will continue on everything in marine operations from reduction gears and anchor winches topside to engine room throttle watches and engine operation down below, to checking and recording instrument gauge readings and daily system engine maintenance. You’ll also train in the preventive maintenance of steering systems and to inspect, maintain, and repair the propellers and shafts. On electrical systems, you’ll train to test and repair electrical devices and components, and on fuel systems to do preventive maintenance like adjusting fuel injection assemblies. For marine vessel maintenance, you’ll train to do daily boat checks, inspecting hulls for damage, and testing, maintaining, and repairing systems topside.

After your Initial Entry Training and Advanced Individual Training, you’ll work supporting Army operations where your duties may take you to the bridge or into the engine room to take important readings; check fluids; keep the ship’s safety equipment ready for emergencies; or take part in activities like shore security.

Serving as a Watercraft Engineer can help you transition from the military to the civilian employment sector because your skills in leadership, teamwork, and problem-solving are skills and values in demand by civilian employers.

To carry out its worldwide mission, the Army relies on its fleet of vessels to go anywhere, anytime and the Watercraft Engineer is a vital member of the Army’s transportation team.