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SOLAS and Maritime Security

Portsmouth Commercial Harbour panorama

Navsregss>Ship Certification>International Ship Security Certificate>SOLAS and Maritime Security

After its delve into the Polar Code the Navregs blog now changes focus to explore Maritime Security. It follows on from previous posts based on the International Ship Security Certificate; delving deeper and looking wider.


A Handy Reference to SOLAS Special Measures to Enhance Maritime Security

Previous Navregs  Maritime Security Related  Posts

What SOLAS chapter  Chapter makes the ISPS code mandatory?

XI-2 – Special Measures to Enhance Maritime Security

Note: ISPS stands for The International Code for the Security of Ships and Port Facilities.

What does SOLAS Chapter XI-2 Cover?Railings

  • Regulation 1 – Definitions
  • Regulation 2 – Application
  • Regulation 3 – Obligations of Contracting Governments with Respect to Security
  • Regulation 4 – Requirements for Companies and Ships
  • Regulation 5 – Specific Responsibility of Companies
  • Regulation 6 – Ship Security Alert System
  • Regulation 7 – Threats to Ships
  • Regulation 8 – Master’s Discretion for Ship Safety and Security
  • Regulation 9 – Control and Compliance Measures
  • Regulation 10 – Requirements for Port Facilities
  • Regulation 11 – Alternative Security Agreements
  • Regulation 12 – Equivalent Security Arrangements
  • Regulation 13 – Communication of Information

What does SOLAS chapter XI apply to?

  • The following types of ships engaged on international voyages:
  • Passenger ships, including high-speed passenger craft;
  • Cargo ships, including high-speed craft, of 500 gross tonnage and upwards;
  • Mobile offshore drilling units.


  • Port facilities serving such ships engaged on international voyages.

Governments shall decide the extent of application of the chapter to those port facilities Ship and harbour cranes which, although used primarily by ships not engaged on international voyages, are required, occasionally, to serve ships arriving or departing on an international voyage.

The chapter does not apply to warships, naval auxiliaries or other ships owned or operated by a Contracting Government and used only on Government non-commercial service.

A selection of definitions from the Chapter

Ship/port interface

The interactions that occur when a ship is directly and immediately affected by actions involving the movement of persons, goods or the provisions of port services to or from the ship.

Port facility

A location, as determined by the Contracting Government or by the Designated Authority, where the ship/port interface takes place. This includes areas such as anchorages, waiting berths and approaches from seaward, as appropriate.

Ship to ship activity

Any activity not related to a port facility that involves the transfer of goods or persons from one ship to another.

Security incident

Any suspicious act or circumstance threatening the security of a ship, or of a port facility or of any ship/port interface or any ship to ship activity.

Security level

The qualification of the degree of risk that a security incident will be attempted or will occur.

Declaration of security

An agreement reached between a ship and either a port facility or another ship with which it interfaces specifying the security measures each will implement.

Recognized security organization

 An organization with appropriate expertise in security matters and with appropriate knowledge of ship and port operations authorized to carry out an assessment, or a verification, or an approval or a certification activity, required by the chapter or the ISPS Code.

Some online Maritime Security Resources

A Really Handy Guide to Ship Certification-Part 3

Keeping vessels safe

Cover of the Really handy Guide to Ship Certification, part 3.

The third book of the series on vessel certification covers the SOLAS and security certificates, including SAFCON, CSSC, PSSC, ISPS and a diversion into the subject of HSSC.

Click here for the book’s Amazon page>


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What is the Polar Water Operational Manual?

South Georgia icebergs

And here we have another Polar Code related post, this time is a guide to the extra document that will have to be carried by ships operating in Polar Waters.

A key part of the Polar Code is the requirement to carry a Polar Water Operations Manual. This post gives a quick summary of the contents of that manual.

To comply with the Polar Code this manual must be carried onboard.

Click here for IMO MEPC 264 58>

What is the goal of the Polar Water Operational Manual?

To provide the owner, operator, master and crew with sufficient information regarding the ship’s operational capabilities and limitations in order to support their decision-making process when in Polar waters.

What are the Functional requirements of the PWOM?

The Manual should include or refer to:

  • Information on the ship-specific capabilities and limitations in relation to the assessment by the Polar Code
  •  Specific procedures to be followed in normal operations and in order to avoid encountering conditions that exceed the ship’s capabilities
  • Specific procedures to be followed in the event
    of incidents in polar waters
  • Specific procedures to be followed in the event that conditions are encountered which exceed the ship’s specific capabilities and limitations
  • Procedures to be followed when using icebreaker assistance, as applicable.

Note: The Manual also shall contain, where applicable, the methodology used to determine capabilities and limitations in ice.

What risk-based procedures should be included in the PWOM?Sun and Polar Seas

  • Voyage planning to avoid ice and/or temperatures that exceed the ship’s
    design capabilities or limitations
  • Arrangements for receiving forecasts of the environmental conditions;
  • Means of addressing any limitations of the hydrographic, meteorological
    and navigational information available
  • Operation of equipment required under other chapters of this Code
    Implementation of special measures to maintain equipment and system
    functionality under low temperatures, topside icing and the presence of sea
    ice, as applicable.
  • Contacting emergency response providers for salvage, search and rescue (SAR), spill response, etc., as applicable
  • In the case of ships ice strengthened in accordance with chapter 3,  procedures for maintaining life support and ship integrity in the event of prolonged entrapment by ice
  • Measures to be taken in the event of encountering ice and/or temperatures which exceed the ship’s design capabilities or limitations
  • Procedures for monitoring and maintaining safety during operations in ice, as applicable, including any requirements for escort operations or icebreaker assistance. Different operational limitations may apply depending on whether the ship is operating independently or with icebreaker escort. Where appropriate, the PWOM should specify both options.

What are the contents of the Polar Water Operational Manual (PWOM)?

Appendix 2 of the code contains a model table of a polar operations manual, here is a list Ice and mountain through a ship's windowof  PWOM contents derived from that Appendix.

Safety Measures

Division 1 – Operational capabilities and limitations

Chapter 1 Operation in ice
  • Operator guidance for safe operation
  • Icebreaking capabilities
  • Manoeuvring in ice
  • Special features Guidance
Chapter 2 Operation in low air temperatures
  • System design
Chapter 3 Communication and navigation capabilities in high latitudes
Chapter 4 Voyage duration

Division 2 – Ship operations

Chapter 1 Strategic planning
  • Avoidance of hazardous ice
  • Avoidance of hazardous temperatures
  • Voyage duration and endurance
  • Human resources management
Chapter 2 Arrangements for receiving forecasts of environmental conditionsElephant Seal and anchor
  • Ice information
  • Meteorological information
Chapter 3 Verification of hydrographic, meteorological and navigational information

Chapter 4 Operation of Special Equipment

  • Navigation systems
  • Communications systems
Chapter 5 Procedures to maintain equipment and system functionality
  • Icing prevention and de-icing
  • Operation of seawater systems
  • Procedures for low temperature operations

Division 3 – Risk management

Chapter 1 Risk mitigation in limiting environmental condition
  • Measures to be considered in adverse ice conditions
  • Measures to be considered in adverse temperature conditions
Chapter 2 Emergency response
  • Damage control
  • Firefighting
  • Escape and evacuation
Chapter 3 Coordination with emergency response services
  • Ship emergency response
  •  Salvage
Chapter 4 Procedures for maintaining life support and ship integrity in the event of
prolonged entrapment by ice.
  • System configuration
  • System operation

Division 4 – Joint operations

Chapter 1 Escorted operations
Chapter 2 Convoy operations

PolarCodeClick to search for the Polar Code on Amazon>

What is the Polar Code Record of Equipment?

Glacier FootRecord of Equipment for the compliance with the international code for ships operating in polar waters- A quick guide

And so the Polar Code posts continue, and so it’s another excuse to dig out some of my favourite photos.
Like many of the other certificates the Polar Code Certificate must be supplemented by a record of equipment form, and like other certificates this is a useful form to have at hand when preparing for the arrival of the surveyor on-board.

This record shall be permanently attached to the Polar Ships Certificate

What is contained on the Polar Code record of Equipment?

Particulars of ship:

  • Name of ship
  • Distinctive number or letters

Record of equipmentKing Penguins at South Georgia

Life-saving appliances

  • Total number of immersion suits with insulation for crew and for passengers
  • Total number of thermal protective aids

Personal and Group Survival Equipment

  • Personal survival equipment – for number of persons
  • Group survival equipment – for number persons
  • Total capacity of liferafts in compliance with chapter 8 of the Polar Code
  • Total capacity of lifeboats in compliance with chapter 8 of the Polar Code

Navigation equipment

  • Two independent echo-sounding devices or a device with two separate independent transducers
  • Remotely rotatable, narrow-beam search lights controllable from the bridge or other means to visually detect ice
  • Manually initiated flashing red light visible from astern (for ships involved in icebreaking operations)
  • Two or more non-magnetic independent means to determine and display heading
  • GNSS compass or equivalent (for ships proceeding to latitudes over 80 degrees)

Communication equipment

  • Sound signaling system mounted to face astern to indicate escort and emergency Ice and mountainsmanoeuvres to following ships as described in the International Code of Signals (for ships intended to provide ice breaking escort).
  • Voice and/or data communications with relevant rescue coordination centres.
  • Equipment for voice communications with aircraft on 121.5 and 123.1 MHz.
  • Two-way voice and data communication with a Telemedical Assistance Service (TMAS).
  • All rescue boats and lifeboats have a device (for ships certified to operate in low air temperature):
    • For transmitting vessel to shore alerts
    • for transmitting signals for location
    • for transmitting and receiving on-scene communications
  • All other survival craft have a device:
    • for transmitting signals for location
    • for transmitting and receiving on-scene communications

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Navigation Light Controller (NLC)-A quick guide the requirements


Bridge of general cargo ship

Some more information from Resolution MSC.253(83)

This post is a continuation from of the last post covering navigation lights performance standards.

Click here to view a cop of MSC 258>

What is a Navigation Light Controller?

Navigation Light Controller (NLC) is a device enabling operational control of a Navigation Light.

What are the requirements of a Navigation Light Controller?Bridge window with gold sun screens

  • An NLC should facilitate ON/OFF controls of individual NLs
  • An NLC should provide visual indications of ON/OFF status of NLs
  • An NLC on board a ship not less than 50 m in length should present the status of all NLs in a logical presentation, meeting the requirements set out in resolution MSC.191(79), e.g., by symbol marks on a display. Click here to view the resolution
  • All indicators of an NLC should be dimmable to ensure easy reading without disturbing the night vision of the Officer of the Watch. The brightness of a display, if fitted, of an NLC should be controllable.

Note: Pre-programmed NL group settings may be provided

What are the requirements regarding light failures?

An NLC on board a ship not less than 50 m in length should provide the alarm for:

  • A failure of power supply to the Navigation Lights
  • A failure, including short circuit, of a lamp which is switched ON.

An NLC should support the use of standardized serial interfaces for marine navigation and communication systems

The NLC should have a bi-directional interface to transfer alarms to external systems and receive acknowledgements of alarms from external systems. The interface should comply with the relevant international standards

Power supply and fallback arrangements

Each navigation light should be connected, via separate circuits, to a navigation light controller located on the bridge in order to avoid any navigation light failure, including short circuit, that affect any navigation lights connected to the controller.

Navigation lights and controllers, and associated equipment should be so constructed and installed, as necessary, that they are readily accessible for inspection and maintenance purposes.

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Where should a vessel’s sidelights be carried?

Sidelights have simpler rules on their placement than masthead lights, and therefore this post is shorter than the last.

Sidelights on MV Balmoral


  • ​ The sidelights of a power-driven vessel shall be placed at a height above the hull not greater than three quarters of that of the forward masthead light.
  •  They shall not be so low as to be interfered with by deck lights

The sidelights, if in a combined lantern and carried on a power-driven vessel of less than 20 meters in length, shall be placed not less than 1 meter below the masthead light.Port Sidelight


On a power-driven vessel of 20 meters or more in length:

  • The sidelights shall not be placed in front of the forward masthead lights.
  • They shall be placed at or near the side of the vessel

Sidelight position summary


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When to show Navigation lights

Navsregs>COLREGS>When to show Navigation lights
Ferry mast

Turn on the Navigation Lights

Bit of backtracking in this post, back to the fundamental question of when to turn the navigation lights on. 

What COLREG  Rule states when navigation lights should be shown?

Rule 20

​When must Navigation lights be shown?

  • Sunset to Sunrise-During the day
  • Sunrise to Sunset-During the night
  • In restricted visibility
  • May be exhibited in all other circumstances when it is deemed necessary.

What other lights can be shown from sunset to sunrise?

No other lights shall be exhibited, except such lights as:

  • Cannot be mistaken for the lights specified in the COLREGS
  • Do not impair their visibility or distinctive characterer
  • Do not Interfere with the keeping of a proper look-out

What is Restricted Visibility?

This is  any condition in which visibility is restricted by:

  • Fog
  • Mist
  • Falling snow
  • Heavy rainstorms
  • Sandstorms
  • Any other similar causes.

See COLREG Rule 3

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Navigation lights- The horizontal cut-offs

Navsregs>COLREGS>Horizontal cut-offs

A quick guide to some of the details in COLREG Annex 1

Sidelights on MV Balmoral

Following the theme of Navigation Light horizontal arcs this post now descended into the details of Annex 1.

Colreg Annex 1

What part of the Rules defines the horizontal cut-offs of Navigation Light?

Annex 1 section 9

What is the horizontal cut off for sidelights in the forward direction?

In the forward direction they should show the minimum required intensities.

The intensities shall decrease to reach practical cut-off between 1 degree and 3 degrees outside the prescribed sectors.

What is the cut-off requirements for the other sectors?

For sternlights and masthead lights and at 22.5 degrees abaft the beam for Masthead lights MV Balmoralsidelights, the minimum required intensities shall be maintained over the arc of the horizon up to 5 degrees  of the prescribed limits. 

From 5 degrees within the sectors the intensity may decrease by 50 percent up to the prescribed limits; it shall decrease steadily to reach practical cut-off at not more than 5 degrees outside the prescribed sectors.

How much can an all-round light be obscured?

Not more than 6 degrees, except anchor lights which need not be placed at an impracticable height above the hull.NUC lights

If it is impracticable to comply with these requirements by exhibiting only one all-round light, two all-round lights shall be used suitably positioned or screened so that they appear, as far as practicable, as one light at a distance of one mile.

Sidelight screens

The sidelights of vessels of 20 metres or more in length shall be fitted with inboard screens painted matt black, and meeting the horizontal sector  requirements of  Annex 1.

On vessels of less than 20 metres in length the sidelights, if necessary to meet the horizontal sector  requirements of the  Annex, shall be fitted with inboard matt black screens.

With a combined lantern with a very narrow division between the green and red sections, external screens need not be fitted.

There is another level of detail below COLREG Annex 1, and that is contained within an IMO Resolution.


Perfomance standards for Navigation lights

Within MSC 253 there are paragraphs giving more details on cut offs and intensity.


In the horizontal directions where decrease of luminous intensity to ìpractical cut-offî is required by section 9 of Annex I to COLREGs, the luminous intensity should be no more than 10% of the average luminous intensity within the prescribed sector for vessels not less than 12 m in length.

Uniformity of intensity

Within the prescribed sector in which the minimum luminous intensity is required  the horizontal intensity distribution of the light should be uniform so that the measured minimum and maximum luminous intensity values do not differ by more than a factor of 1.5 for vessels not less than 12 m in length.

This is to avoid luminous intensity changes which may result in the appearance of a flashing light

Click here for IMO MSC 253>

Click to view this Handy Revision Guide for Kindle on AmazonA Really Handy Guide to learn the Collision Regulations

This was the first in the series of Kindle revision guides covering the COLREGS.

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Navigation Lights-Power Driven Vessels

Navsregs>COLREGS>Power Driven Vessel

It is time to start a new series of posts, a series that returns to explore COLREGS. The series of posts will start its  dive into the Navigation Light Rules with the most common set of lights seen deep sea, a power-driven vessel of  50  metres in length underway.

Note: These posts will not reproduce the Rules word perfect, so please refer to copy of the Regulations for the original wording.

Power Driven Vessel Lights

What Rule covers power driven vessels underway?

RULE 23 Power-driven Vessels Underway

It is important to note when interpreting this Rule two of the definitions in Rule 3, namely

  • That Power-driven vessel means any vessel propelled by machinery
  • Underway means that a vessel is not at anchor, or made fast to the shore, or aground

What is contained in Rule 23?

  • (a) What a power driven Vessel Underway must exhibit
  • (b) What an air cushion vessel should exhibit
  • (c) What a power driven vessel of less than 12 metres in length should exhibit

What lights must a power driven vessel underway show?Power Driven vessel end on

  • Masthead light forward
  • A second masthead light abaft of and higher than the forward one; a vessel of less than 50 meters in length shall not be obliged to exhibit such light but may do so
  • sidelights
  • A stern light

The lights of smalI power driven vessels

Of less than 12 meters in length

May insted of the masthead lights and side lights lights exhibit an all-round white light and sidelights.

Of less less than 7 meters in length whose maximum speed does not exceed 7 knots

May exhibit an all round white light instead of masthead, side and stern lights, but shall, if practicable, also exhibit sidelights.

How may the positioning of the lights of a power driven vessel less than 12 meters in length differ?

The masthead light or all-round white light may be displaced from the fore and aft centerline of the vessel if centerline fitting is not practicable, as long as the sidelights are combined in one lantern which shall be carried on the fore and aft centerline of the vessel or located as nearly as Power Driven Vessel from Asternpracticable in the same fore and aft line as the masthead light or the all-round white light.

The size requirements list simplified

  • 50m: Two masthead lights required
  • 12m: May combine masthead and stern lights in all round light
  • 7m/7knts: May replace all the lights with an all round light

The next post will look at the meanings of the key terms in Rule 23.

Click to view this Handy Revision Guide for Kindle on AmazonA Really Handy Guide to learn the Collision Regulations

This was the first in the series of Kindle revision guides covering the COLREGS.

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COLREGS and Navigation lights

Navsregs>COLREGS>COLREGS and Navigation lights

It is time for a change of tack across on the Navregs blog, to leave the SOLAS V  posts to one side for a bit and delve down into a subject area not covered for a while, the COLREGS. This time it is lights.

The posts will start at the generic level, and then descend into more and more detail, and see where it finally reaches the bottom of the regulatory pile.

Power Driven Vessel Lights

Which Rules cover navigation lights?

Here is a list the COLREG rules defining the lights vessels must show. Part C of the Rules is the section covering navigation lights. As the posts build in this series, so this list will have links added to form a useful index.

  • Rule 20 Application
  • Rule 22 Visibility of lights
  • Rule 23 Power driven vessels underway
  • Rule 24 Towing and Pushing
  • Rule 25 Sailing Vessels Underway and vessels Under oars
  • Rule 26 Fishing Vessels
  • Regulation 27 Vessels Not Under Command or Restricted in Their Ability To Manoeuvre
  • Rule 28 Vessels constrained by their draft
  • Rule 29 Pilot Vessels
  • Rule 30 Anchored Vessels and Vessels aroun
  • Rule 31 Seaplanes

The Annexes

Much of the technical specifications of navigation lights is contained within ANNEX I.

  • ANNEX I-Positioning and technical details of lights and shapes
  • ANNEX II-Additional Signals for fishing vessels fishing in close proximity

What is contained within the Navigation light Rules?A Masthead Light

And here is a list of the contents of those Rules, and some additional rules from the rest of the COLREGS with navlight related topics.

Rule 1 Application

  • (C) Additional lights and shapes
  • (E) Vessels of special constuction or purpose

Part C lights and shapes

Rule 20 Application

  •  (a) Requirement to comply with  in all weathers.
  •  (b) Requirement to comply with at night.
  • (c) When to require with  part during the day
  •  (e) The lights  shall comply with the provisions of Annex I

Rule  21 DefinitionsPort Sidelight

  • (a) Masthead light
  • (b) Sidelights
  • (c) Sternlight
  • (d) Towing  light
  • (e) All -Round light
  • (f) Flashing light

Rule 22 Visibility of lights

  • (a) Vessels of 50 metres or more in length
  • (b) Vessels  of 12 metres or more in length but less than 50 metres in length
  • (c) Vessels of less than 12 metres in length
  • (d) Lights on inconspicuous towed vessels or objects

Rule 23 Power driven vessels underway

  • (a) What a power driven Vessel Underway must exhibit
  • (b) What an air cushion vessel should exhibit
  • (c) What a power driven vessel of less than 12 metres in length should exhibit

Rule 24 Towing and Pushing

  • (a) What a power driven vessel when towing must exhibitAll-round lights
  • (b) What a vessel pushing ahead as a composite unit shall exhibit
  • (c) What a vessel pushing ahead of towing alongside shall exhibit
  • (d) Requirement to comply with Rule 23(a}(ii) in addition
  • (e) What a vessel or object being towed should exhibit
  • (f) What a group of vessels being towed should exhibit
  • (g) What inconspicuous or partly submerged objects or vessels should exhibit.
  • (h) When a towed vessel cannot exhibit these lights
  • (i) What can be displayed by vessels towing a vessel in distress or need of assistance

Rule 25 Sailing Vessels Underway and vessels Under oars

  • (a) What a sailing vessel underway should exhibit
  • (b) What a sailing vessel of less than 20 metres in length
  • (c) Additional lights that may be shown by sailing vessels
  • (d) What sailing vessels of less than 7 metres in length and vessels under oars shall show

Rule 26 Fishing Vessels

  • (a) Requirement that a vessel engaged in fishing should comply with only this RuleFishing Vessel lights
  • (b) What a vessel engaged in trawling shall exhibit
  • (c) What a vessel engaged in fishing other then trawling shall exhibit
  • (d) When the additional signals in Annex II can be used
  • (e) What a vessel not engaged in fishing shall exhibit

Regulation 27 Vessels Not Under Command or Restricted in Their Ability To Manoeuvre

  • (a) What a vessel not under command shal exhibit
  • (b) What a vessel restricted in her ability to manoeuvre shall exhibit
  • (c) What a towing vessel when restricted in her ability to manoeuvre should exhibit
  • (d) What a vessel engaged in dredging or underwater operations shall exhibit
  • (e) What a small vessel engaged in diving may exhibit
  • (f) What a vessel engaged in mine clearance shall exhibit
  • (g) The requirements for vessels less than 12 metres in length
  • (h) These lights do not mean distress

Rule 28 Vessels constrained by their draft

Rule 29 Pilot Vessels

  • (a) What a pilot vessel engaged in pilot duty shall exhibit
  • (b) What a pilot vessel not engaged in pilot duty shall exhibit

Rule 30 Anchored Vessels and Vessels around

  • (a) What a vessel at anchor shall exhibit
  • (b) What a vessel of less than 50 metres in length may exhibit when at anchor
  • (c) What a vessel of over a 100 metres in length shall exhibit in addition

Rule 31 Seaplanes

What lights a seaplane shall exhibit

Rule 36 Signals to attract Attention

Rule 38 Exemptions

The following expemtions are still in force:

  • The repositioning of lights as a result of conversion from Imperial to metric units and rounding off measurement figures
  • The repositioning of masthead lights on vessels of less than 150 meters in length, resulting from theprescriptions of Section 3(a) of Annex I
  •  The repositioning of all-round lights resulting from the prescription of Section 9(b) of Annex I

The Annexes

Navigation lights from the bulk of the  Annexes of the COLREGS. ANNEX I contains all the detail of what, where, and how the lights should be fitted.



  • 1. Definition
  • 2. Vertical positioning and spacing of lights
  • 3. Horizontal positioning and spacing of lights
  • 4. Details of location of direction-indicating lights for fishing vessels, dredgers
  • and vessels engaged in underwater operations
  • 5. Screens for sidelights
  • 7. Colour specification of lights
  • 8. Intensity of lights
  • 9. Horizontal sectors
  • 10. Vertical sectors
  • 11. Intensity of non-electric lights
  • 12. Manoeuvring light
  • 13. High Speed Craft
  • 14. Approval


Additional Signals for fishing vessels fishing in close proximity

  • 1. General
  • 2. Signals for trawlers
  • 3. Signals for purse seiners

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The maintenance of navigation equipment

Navsregs>SOLAS>SOLAS V>Maintenance of Navigational Equipment

Radars , radios and lights on ship's gantry mastSOLAS V Regulation 16-Maintenance of equipment.

On the Navregs  blog writing the front the exploration of SOLAS V continues . This time the focus is on maintenance.

What is the requirements for the maintenance of navigational equipment?

That adequate arrangements are in place to ensure that the performance of the equipment required by SOLAS Chapter V is maintained.

Note This will include ensuring that proper manuals enabling on-board maintenance are available and that that companies have ensured a comprehensive back-up service, including provision of both spares and maintenance engineers by manufacturers or their agents.

Can a vessel sail with defective navigational equipment?

Yes, where repair facilities are not readily available, provided suitable arrangements are made by the master to take the inoperative equipment or unavailable information into account in planning and executing a safe voyage to a port where repairs can take place. In such cases the vessel must obtain approval from their flag state. Approval to sail will not apply to cases when the defects are detected during a safety survey.

The decision to allow a vessel to sale with defective equipment  will depend on the equipment involved, the magnitude of the malfunction and it’s effect on the ship being able to complete the voyage safely.

Equipment manuals and IEC

IEC 60945, issued by the IEC states that equipment manuals must be:

  • Be written in English
  • Identify the category of the equipment or units to which they refer
  • in the case of equipment so designed that fault diagnosis and repair down to component level are practicable, provide full circuit diagrams, component layouts and a component parts list
  • In the case of equipment containing complex modules in which fault diagnosis and repair down to component level are not practicable, contain sufficient information to enable a defective complex module to be located, identified and replaced.

IEC is the international Electrotechnical Commission.

ISM and maintenance

ISM paragraph 5.10 contains the codes requirements for maintenance.

“5.10 Maintenance of the Ship and Equipment

5.10.1 The Company should establish procedures to ensure that the ship is maintained in conformity with the provisions of the relevant rules and regulations and with any additional requirements which may be established by the Company.

5.10.2 In meeting these requirements the Company should ensure that:
.1 inspections are held at appropriate intervals;
.2 any non-conformity is reported, with its possible cause, if known;
.3 appropriate corrective action is taken; and
.4 records of these activities are maintained”

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