Men make up the majority of Deckhands in the United States, bringing in about $39K annually. Location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by experience level. While slightly less than a third report receiving no health benefits, a strong majority do receive medical coverage, and more than half have dental, as well. Most Deckhands like their work and job satisfaction is high. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
Job Description for Deckhand
"Deckhand" typically refers to a low-ranking sailor who works on a ship and assists in its ongoing maintenance. Deckhands are often employed on commercial ships and occasionally by private ships.Read More...
The tasks of a deckhand can vary greatly depending on the type of ship and what work is necessary on a given day, and the deckhand's prior experience may also be a factor. Senior deckhands may have easier jobs, while newer ones may take on tough and dirty-cleaning work as they gain experience and move on to a higher position. Some deckhands in certain geographic areas may also be responsible for watching for pirates, as piracy is a problem particularly in Southeast Asian and African waters.
Some cruise ships hire deckhands to help passengers enjoy their mini-vacations, direct them to any particular areas or events on the ship, and address all their questions and concerns, while deckhands on a fishing boat may assist inexperienced fisherman with tasks like baiting fish or getting them into the boat.
- Maintains appropriate levels of lubricant in all main engine and the ship service diesel generator.
- Reads gauges and other indicators such as fuel oil pressure and temperature.
- Adjusts steam burning boiler drafts and maintains proper combustion, pressure and water levels in boilers.
- Greases/lubricates bearings, pumps and couplings.
- Operates and cleans oil filtration and centrifuge equipment.
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Pay by Experience Level for Deckhand
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Relatively untried employees who have fewer than five years of experience earn around $34K on average. People who have worked for five to 10 years can expect a higher median salary of $38K. Deckhands who work for 10 to 20 years in their occupation tend to earn about $46K. Survey participants with more than twenty years of experience only make around $43K on average, though; this group reports a lower median than the one claimed by mid-career individuals.