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An able seaman is a sailor who generally serves as a ship's helmsman. Able seamen perform multiple tasks on deck. They stand watch to look for obstructions in the ship's path, turn the wheel on bridge, measure water depth, and use emergency equipment under instructions from the mate. They are also responsible for painting and chipping rust from the ship's structure.
Government-issued certification is a must to be employed as an able seaman. This is a strenuous job. Able seamen must have the physical strength and stamina to handle the rigors of the job.
Prospective employers will be looking for applicants who can handle being away at sea for several weeks if not months at a time. Not everybody can handle long sea voyages. If you have not done any sea voyage, either as an apprentice or employee, employers will be reluctant to hire you. At the interview, you must emphasize your 'can do' attitude as that is crucial when you are working as part of a ship's crew. You must also stress that you work well as part of a team. Be prepared to answer all kinds of questions about working aboard a ship and also about being out at sea. You can get an idea of what kinds of questions to expect when you go to mock questions.