A deckhand fills an entry-level but important position on a river barge. His duties range from everyday tasks such as making beds, washing dishes, making coffee and waking other boat hands, to marine-specific responsibilities such as checking the tow, replacing worn stationary rigging and checking barges for water. Many barge companies don't require deckhands to have any prior marine experience, but they do expect them to be hard-working, reliable and loyal.
Applying for a Deckhand Position
Many companies, such as the Ingram Marine Group and Kirby Inland Marine, prefer candidates to visit their websites to complete the application and submit resumes online. Others, such as Golden Barge Line, provide their addresses and numbers to submit your resume via fax. The next step is a phone interview. River barge companies are, as a whole, looking for candidates who are drug- and alcohol-free and possess at least a high school diploma or its equivalent. Some prefer that you be at least 20 and have a valid driver's license.