Commenced sea service in 1965 as Deck Cadet with Blue Star Line at the age of 16. Attained Cert. of Competency as Master in 1976. Served as deck officer in overseas shipping companies Blue Star Line, Port Line and Concordia Line until 1976. Served with Australian National Line (ANL) through to 1980 then joined Australian Offshore Services (AOS) as 1st Mate. From 1980 until 2017 served as Deck Officer or Captain in Command in varied Offshore Support Vessels (OSV’s), Anchor Handler, Dive Support, DP Subsea & PSV’s. Finally serving as one of Farstad Shipping Indian Pacific’s Seagoing Mentors.
Commenced service in 1964 with British India as a deck cadet after 4 years pre-sea training at HMS Worcester. Served up to 2nd Officer with BI (later incorporated into P&O General Cargo Division) until obtaining his Master’s certificate in 1973 and joined Australian Offshore Services as First Mate and promoted to Master in 1976, later came ashore as Operations Manager in 1979. Moved to Atlas Offshore in 1982 which was bought out by P&O a few years later. Re-joined AOS in February 1989 and served as Mate and Master before coming ashore as assistant operations Manager in November 1998. AOS was incorporated into P&O Maritime Services in 1990, served as Operations and Ship Manager until 2003 when P&OMS Offshore ships and personnel were bought by Farstad Shipping. Served as HSEQ and Quality Assurance Manager in Farstad Shipping (Indian Pacific) before retiring in June 2015. Now enjoying the challenges in helping with the development of Offshore & Specialist Ships Australia.
have been lucky to be involved in the industry at many levels since the heady days of the early 80s starting at Lombardo Marine Group, where my earliest memories stem from that companies involvement in the development of the NWS and installation of NRA, it was a different time then from HSE to technology used, but what was achieved was incredible, since then I have been privileged to have had a career in this industry and also working with some of the major vessel operators at senior levels, and was able to appreciate and be grateful for the opportunities and what this amazing industry has to offer.
Whilst the industry has changed over time and the technology has developed incredibly, the ups downs and challenges faced never make it a dull moment.
My interest in OSSA is in the preservation of the history of the pioneering vessels and crews from those the early days , and preserving and maintaining links with the legends of the past, promotion of the opportunities that are there and preservation of a vibrant Australian shipping and Offshore industry, and finally to ensure that there is a future the new generation to aspire to.
Rob Anderson escaped to sea as a deck apprentice in British flag ships when he was 15, after failing miserably at school and just avoiding expulsion. After many years serving as a Mate in general cargo, ro/ro, container, salvage, passenger ships, oil rigs and oil industry ships he gained his first job as Master at age 29. He served for 40 years as Master in a wide variety of ship types ranging from anchor-clankers and DP support ships to a humble Murray River paddle steamer. Gained a license as a Great Barrier Reef and Torres Strait Marine Pilot (also a Check & Training Pilot) piloting a wide range of ships of every size and shape up and down the Inner Reef passages for 12 years. Together with two other Pilots started a new Pilotage Service in Hydrographers Passage (HydroPilots), owning and operating our own long-range Marine Pilot transfer helicopters, before again returning to sea as an Unlimited DP Master. In addition, he had 4 years as Harbour Master for Gippsland Ports (which includes the largest recreational waterway in Australia), and has been Marine Operations Manager for both Australian Offshore Services, and Tidewater. He has donated his time to drive ships for Sea Shepherd world-wide, as and when the task suits. Also on several marine qualifications Technical Advisory Committees with Australian Industry Standards, and actively participates in promoting the Australian Maritime Industry to school students with OSSA. Rob has also held a Private Pilot (Aeroplane) License for more than 30 years with twin-engine and Night endorsements; owned aircraft – crashed one into the sea! Lectures part-time at Maritime Colleges (Master Class 1 Revalidation/Marine Pilots Professional Development/VTS Operators), and for over 10 years proudly helped nearly 400 seafarers gain their Master 4 Certificate of Competency. He is also a registered Civil Celebrant; one of only three shipmasters in Australia able to conduct weddings (and funerals!), and is a published author. These days he lives on a small farm, rides high performance motorcycles and works part-time as a pole-dancer in a gay nightclub.
I started my 24 months cadetship in 1992 with Neptune Orient Lines Singapore. Obtained my Class 3 F.G. unlimited in 1995 and started my career mainly on product tankers. My last rank on board was as Chief Officer and in 2001started working with AP Moller Singapore in HR.
My key role with OSSA is to assist the committee with the collection of artworks, paintings and memoriabillia within the organisation.