Fleet time

My son is currently at Dartmouth doing IWO(F) and will soon be assigned to a ship for basic fleet time. Later he will be assigned to another ship for Specialist Fleet time to gain a bridge qualification.

He tells me that there is a rumour circulating that some of those in earlier batches have spent their entire fleet time in ships tied up in dockyards and that several have left the navy in frustration because this is not giving them the necessary experience to advance with their careers.

Does anyone know if there is any truth in this? If so, it seems a very expensive waste.
There are 2 types of Fleet Time (Basic and Specialist). Basic Fleet just needs to be done on a ship - indeed, being on a ship alongside will give a Junior Warfare Officer to see stuff he'll never usually get involved with, and can only be a good thing.

The aim of Specialist Fleet Time is to get them ready for their Nav assessment. This can only be done at sea, but the time allocated reflects the fact ships spend upto 40% of their time alongside. If your son's ship is alongside for a sustained period, he will be loaned out to get him his sea time. Obviously, the available sea time needs to be shared out, and he may be delayed for a period time.

I can understand the huge frustration, and as someone who is taking these people to sea, I am only ever impressed (generally) by their keenness and desire to get on with their job. Whilst it is hugely frustrating, I would suggest that a little short term patience is worth it for a career gain.

If you want to chat more, PM me.

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