Polar code adopted, sensitive sea area designated and work progressed on ballast water, energy-efficiency and air pollution implementation at IMO environment meeting

Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), 68th session, 11-15 May 2015  

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Updated Rescue at sea guidance now available
14 01 2015
The updated and revised Rescue at Sea:  A guide to principles and practice as applied to refugees and migrants is now available. It has been prepared jointly by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). It provides guidance on relevant legal provisions, on practical procedures to ensure the prompt disembarkation of rescued persons, and on measures to meet their specific needs, particularly in the case of refugees and asylum-seekers. More information on this topic can be found here
Mandatory electronic information exchange on horizon following revised FAL Convention approval
The Facilitation Committee (FAL), meeting for its 39th session, approved a revised annex to the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL), 1965, as amended, following a comprehensive five-year review aimed at modernizing the Convention. To be circulated with a view to adoption at the Committee’s next session (FAL 40, scheduled for March/April 2016), the revised annex would introduce the mandatory electronic exchange of information on cargo, crew and passengers.  
The FAL convention includes, in its annex, “Standards" and "Recommended Practices" on formalities, documentary requirements and procedures which should be applied on arrival, stay and departure to the ship itself, and to its crew, passengers, baggage and cargo.
Important proposed changes in the revised Annex include the introduction of a new standard relating to the obligation of public authorities to establish systems for the electronic exchange of information, within a period of three years after the adoption of the amendments. There would be a transitional period of not less than 12 months from the date of the introduction of such systems to make the use of electronic transmissions mandatory, during which period paper and electronic documents would be allowed.  
A further recommended practice encourages the use of the “single window” concept to enable all the information required by public authorities in connection with the arrival, stay and departure of ships, persons and cargo, to be submitted without duplication.  
Other revised standards cover shore leave and access to shore-side facilities for crew, including the addition of a paragraph in the standard to say that there should be no discrimination, in respect of shore leave, on grounds of nationality, race, colour, sex, religion, political opinion, or social origin, and irrespective of the flag State of the ship on which seafarers are employed, engaged or work.
Standards and recommended practices relating to stowaways are also updated, to include references to relevant sections of the International Ship and Port Facilities’ Security (ISPS) Code. A new standard requires Governments, where appropriate, to incorporate into their national legislation legal grounds to allow prosecution of stowaways, attempted stowaways and any individual or company aiding a stowaway or an attempted stowaway with the intention to facilitate access to the port area, any ship, cargo or freight containers. 
The IMO Standardized Forms (FAL forms), which cover IMO General Declaration; Cargo Declaration; Ship's Stores Declaration; Crew's Effects Declaration; Crew List• Passenger List and Dangerous Goods will be updated.  
Definitions will also be revised where needed and references to persons will be made gender neutral (“his/her” instead of “his”).   
The new revised annex could enter into force 15 months after adoption, under the tacit acceptance procedure.  
Other matters considered by the Committee are outlined in the summary which can be downloaded here​.  

SOLAS rules for recovering persons from the water enter into force
1 july 2014
New requirements under the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) to require all ships to have plans and procedures to recover persons from the water are among a set of SOLAS amendments entering into force on 1 July 2014.
Recovery of persons from the water
The SOLAS amendments, adopted in 2012, were developed as part of the International Maritime Organization (IMO)'s work on large passenger ship safety and are aimed at ensuring all ships have the capability to effectively serve as a rescue asset and have the right equipment to be able to rescue persons from the water and from survival craft, in the event of an incident.
This new requirement is intended to enhance safety at sea and also to provide support to search and rescue coordinators in all types of rescue operations and, particularly, in those situations where there is insufficient dedicated search and rescue capacity or access to helicopters and specialized rescue craft is limited.
The ship's plans and procedures should take into account related Guidelines for the development of plans and procedures for recovery of persons from the water MSC.1/Circ.1447
Ships constructed before 1 July 2014 are required to comply with the requirement by the first periodical or renewal safety equipment survey of the ship to be carried out after 1 July 2014,whichever comes first.
The implementation of the requirements on ships to which SOLAS does not apply is encouraged under a related MSC resolution, also adopted in 2012, which invites SOLAS Contracting Governments to determine to what extent the requirements should apply to:
  • cargo ships of a gross tonnage below 500 engaged on any voyage;
  • cargo ships of a gross tonnage of 500 and above not engaged on international voyages;
  • passenger ships not engaged on international voyages;
  • fishing vessels;
  • high-speed craft;
  • dynamically supported craft; special purpose ships; and
  • mobile offshore drilling units.
For seafarers, IMO has issued A Pocket Guide to Recovery Techniques (IMO I947E).
Reducing on-board noise
Also entering into force on 1 July 2014 is the new SOLAS regulation II-1/3-12, which requires new ships to be constructed to reduce on-board noise and to protect personnel from noise, in accordance with the revised Code on noise levels on board ships, which sets out mandatory maximum noise level limits for machinery spaces, control rooms, workshops, accommodation and other spaces on board ships.
Fire-fighter communication on-board
Amendments to SOLAS regulation II-2/10 on fire fighting enter into force on 1 July 2014, to require a minimum of two two-way portable radiotelephone apparatus for each fire party for fire fighters' communication to be carried. The apparatus shall be of an explosion-proof type or intrinsically safe. Ships constructed before 1 July 2014 shall comply with the above requirements not later than the first survey after 1 July 2018.
Instructions, on-board training and drills
Further amendments to regulation II-2/15 on instructions, on-board training and drills require an on-board means of recharging breathing apparatus cylinders used during drills, or a suitable number of spare cylinders.
Protection of vehicle, special category and ro-ro spaces
Another amendment to regulation II-2/20 on protection of vehicle, special category and ro-ro spaces related to fixed fire-extinguishing systems, updates the requirements. The amendments apply to ships constructed on or after 1 July 2014. Ships constructed before 1 July 2014 shall comply with the previously applicable requirements.
Forms of certificates and records of equipment
Other amendments to the appendix to the annex to the SOLAS Convention replace all forms of certificates and records of equipment, including its 1988 Protocol, and further amendments relate to the forms of the Cargo Ship Safety Construction Certificate and Cargo Ship Safety Equipment Certificate of its 1978 Protocol.
Container convention amendments
Also entering into force on 1 July 2014 are amendments to the International Convention for Safe Containers (CSC), 1972, which were adopted in 2013 by resolution MSC.355(92), to incorporate and facilitate the entry into force of amendments to the CSC Convention adopted in 1993 by resolution A.737(18), including amendments relating to the form of the safety approval plate and to the approval of existing and new containers.
The amendments also introduce a transitional period for marking containers with restricted stacking capacity and include a list of deficiencies which do not require an immediate out-of-service decision by control officers, but require additional safety measures to enable safe ongoing transport.
The SOLAS convention has been ratified by 162 States representing 98.77% of world merchant shipping tonnage.
Goal-Based Standards (GBS) verification process is underway
4 JAN 2014 
IMO audit teams will shortly be established to verify construction rules for bulk carriers and oil tankers of classification societies which act as recognized organizations (ROs), following the receipt of requests for verification by the 31 December 2013 deadline. A new SOLAS regulation II-1/3-10 on Goal-based ship construction standards (GBS) for bulk carriers and oil tankers was adopted by IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee (MSC), at its eighty-seventh session in May 2010, by resolution MSC.290(87). This regulation, which entered into force on 1 January 2012, requires that all oil tankers and bulk carriers of 150 m in length and above, for which the building contract is placed on or after 1 July 2016, satisfy applicable structural requirements conforming to the functional requirements of the International Goal-based Ship Construction Standards for Bulk Carriers and Oil Tankers (GBS Standards) (resolution MSC.287(87)).
Under the GBS Standards, construction rules for bulk carriers and oil tankers of classification societies which act as recognized organizations (ROs) or national Administrations will be verified, based on the Guidelines for verification of conformity with goal-based ship construction standards for bulk carriers and oil tankers (resolution MSC.296(87)) (GBS Guidelines).  According to the timetable approved by MSC 87, the deadline for the receipt by IMO of initial verification requests from classification societies was 31 December 2013.
In support of the Committee’s request that the verification process should be conducted as efficiently as possible, the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) has delivered its Common Package 1 comprising various IACS requirements to support the requests from its member societies.
Based on the requests for verification audits, the IMO Secretariat will establish GBS Audit Teams as soon as possible, to conduct audits for verification of the subject construction rules.  The outcome of the audits will be submitted to the MSC in May 2016 at the latest and, if approved by the MSC, those construction rules will be applied to bulk carriers and oil tankers to be built on or after 1 July 2016.
On 20 December 2013, IMO Secretary-General Koji Sekimizu met with the Chairman of IACS, Mr. Roberto Cazzulo, Chairman of RINA Services, who confirmed that the IACS Council had adopted new harmonised Common Structural Rules (CSR) for oil tankers and bulk carriers, which will be presented to IMO for GBS verification as its Common Package 2, by the end of June 2014.
Commenting on the above developments, Mr. Sekimizu expressed his satisfaction with the timely and efficient manner in which the GBS verification process was being progressed, as instructed by the Maritime Safety Committee.
Source: IMO
High-viscosity PIB carried by ship to be subject to stringent discharge requirements

23 October 2013 

IMO’s Working Group on the Evaluation of Safety and Pollution Hazards of Chemicals (ESPH 19), meeting at IMO Headquarters from 21 to 25 October, has agreed to classify high-viscosity PIB (Polyisobutylene) as category X for carriage by ship, thereby prohibiting the discharge of cargo residues into the sea.

The categorization and carriage requirements for high-viscosity PIB will be included in the annual MEPC.2/Circular on the Provisional categorization of liquid substances, usually issued by IMO on 17 December each year and will be proposed for inclusion in the next edition of the International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships carrying Dangerous Chemicals in Bulk (IBC Code) which lists chemicals and their hazards and gives both the ship type required to carry that product as well as the environmental hazard rating.

Amendments to the IBC Code are usually put forward on an annual basis so the next amendments could be considered during 2014, and if included in the next set of amendments to the IBC Code then the provisions for PIB could have an effective implementation date of 1 July 2016.

The report of the ESPH Working Group will be put forward to the Sub-committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (meeting in February 2014) for approval. The Sub-Committee then submits its recommendations to the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), which is next scheduled to meet 31 March to 4 April 2014. The MEPC.2/Circular on the Provisional categorization of liquid substances, is usually issued by IMO prior to the PPR and MEPC meetings, to provide the industry and Administrations with information relating to the provisional categorization as agreed by the ESPH Working Group, ahead of formal approval by the MEPC.

Category X under the International Convention for Prevention of Pollution from Ships Annex II Regulations for the control of pollution by noxious liquid substances in bulk includes noxious liquid substances which, if discharged into the sea from tank cleaning or deballasting operations, are deemed to present a major hazard to either marine resources or human health and, therefore, justify the prohibition of the discharge into the marine environment.

For substances under category X, a tank from which a substance in Category X has been unloaded, must be prewashed before the ship leaves the port of unloading. The resulting residues must be discharged to a reception facility until the concentration of the substance in the effluent is at or below 0.1% by weight.

MARPOL Annex II lists four categories for noxious liquid substances carried in bulk:

• Category X: present a major hazard to either marine resources or human health and, therefore, justify the prohibition of the discharge into the marine environment;

• Category Y: present a hazard to either marine resources or human health or cause harm to amenities or other legitimate uses of the sea and therefore justify a limitation on the quality and quantity of the discharge into the marine environment;

• Category Z: present a minor hazard to either marine resources or human health and therefore justify less stringent restrictions on the quality and quantity of the discharge into the marine environment; and

• Other Substances: considered to present no harm to marine resources, human health, amenities or other legitimate uses of the sea when discharged into the sea from tank cleaning of deballasting operations.

Previously, PIB was classified as category Y material but there was no differentiation between high or low viscosity grades. Low-viscosity PIB will remain as a category Y product.




The DSC Sub-Committee held its 18th session from 16 to 20 September 2013. The main achievements are as follows:


The Sub-Committee:
Agreed to draft amendments to SOLAS regulation VI/2 requesting the gross mass of each loaded container to be verified and declared by the shipper.
Agreed to draft Guidelines regarding the verified gross mass of a container carrying cargo. The exemption for wheeled containers loaded on ro-ro ships on short international voyages was discussed and finally added in the draft regulation (This issue might well be further discussed when the draft is proposed at next MSC for approval).
Agreed, in principle, to the draft amendments to chapter 7 of the IMDG Code preventing the use of counterfeit refrigerants for submission to E&T 20 for further consideration, with a view to finalisation.


The Sub-Committee:
Agreed in principle to the draft amendment 03-15, subject to finalisation by E&T 21, including a number of individual schedules for new cargoes to be included in the IMSBC Code. And in particular,
Agreed to the inclusion of new test procedure for determining the TML of Iron Ore Fines in the draft amendment 03-15 of the Code.
Agreed to a draft individual schedule for IRON ORE FINES and to a draft amendment to the individual schedule for IRON ORE.
Agreed that for iron ore fines containing 35 per cent or more of total goethite, the individual schedule for IRON ORE should be applied, and agreed to apply the requirement for goethite content declaration to Iron Ore Fines containing 35 per cent or more of total goethite, when carried in accordance under the individual schedule for IRON ORE.
Noted the progress on new test protocols for NICKEL ORE.
Discussed again the carriage of DRI(C) without inert gas, which will still and only be possible under the exemption regime.
Agreed to establish a correspondence group on HME substances within the IMSBC Code in relation to the revised MARPOL Annex V.
Agreed on the need to develop validated training material to facilitate the safe transport and operation procedures involving solid bulk cargoes and further agreed that a training IMO Model course on the safe transport of solid bulk cargoes should be developed.


The Sub-Committee:
Agreed to a new draft SOLAS regulation XI-1/7 relating to the carriage requirements for portable instruments that test the atmosphere of enclosed spaces (namely oxygen, flammable products, H2S and CO), for submission to MSC 93 for approval and subsequent adoption (will be applicable to all types of SOLAS ships of all ages).
Agreed to a draft MSC circular on Guidelines to facilitate the selection of portable atmosphere testing instruments for enclosed spaces as required by SOLAS regulation XI-1/7, for submission to MSC 93 for approval (on the basis of an IACS proposal).
Agreed to draft consequential amendments to the Code for the construction and equipment of mobile offshore drilling units (1979, 1989 and 2009 MODU Codes).

Working/drafting groups planned for CCC 1
.1 Development of international code of safety for ships using gases or other low-flashpoint fuels
.2 HME substances within the IMSBC Code in relation to the revised MARPOL Annex V

Correspondence groups established at DSC 18 and BLG 17
CG 1 – Development of international code of safety for ships using gases or other low-flashpoint fuels (established by BLG 17)
CG 2 – HME substances within the IMSBC Code in relation to the revised MARPOL Annex V
CG 3 – Revision to the Guidance on the continued use of existing IMO type portable tanks and road tank vehicles for the transport of dangerous goods (DSC/Circ.12 and Corrigenda)


VIDEO : Entry into enclosed spaces

02 Jul 13 - 11:21

IMO News Magazine 2013- issue 2

The Online Magazine of the International Maritime Organization

 The International Maritime Organization has issued its online magazine, IMO News Magazine 2013 - issue 2, including a wide range of topics such as:

- Rescue boats: mandatory servicing requirements

- IMO pledges to assist in West and Central Africa piracy code

- Special event marks Legal Committee's 100th session

- World Maritime University: 30 years of success

- Women at the helm: film launched by IMO

Online digital issue coming soon

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IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee meets for 65th session

Preview: Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), 65th session, 13 to 17 May 2013

May 9, 2013


The Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) meets for its 65th session from 13 to 17 May 2013, at IMO Headquarters in London.

Items on the busy agenda include the implementation of energy-efficiency regulations and the ballast water management and ship-recycling treaties.

Further guidelines on energy-efficiency measures for ships to be considered
The MEPC is expected to continue its work on further developing technical and operational measures relating to energy-efficiency measures for ships, following the entry into force, on January 2013, of the new chapter 4 of MARPOL Annex VI, which includes requirements mandating the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI), for new ships, and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP), for all ships.

The Committee will review draft guidance developed by a correspondence group, including:

• draft guidelines for determining minimum propulsion power to maintain the manoeuvrability of ships in adverse conditions;
• draft guidance on treatment of innovative energy-efficiency technologies for calculation and verification of the attained EEDI; and
• draft guidelines for the calculation of the coefficient fw for decrease in ship speed in a representative sea condition.

Resolution on technical cooperation for energy efficiency measures to be discussed
The MEPC is expected to further consider the draft MEPC Resolution on “Promotion of Technical Co-operation and Transfer of Technology relating to the Improvement of Energy Efficiency of Ships”, with a view to its adoption.

Update of GHG emissions estimate expected to get go-ahead
The MEPC is expected to agree on the development of study for an updated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions’ estimate for international shipping, following discussion in an expert workshop, which met earlier this year, on the methodology and assumptions to be used.

The new study would focus on updating key figures in the current (second) IMO GHG Study (2009), which estimated that international shipping emitted 870 million tonnes, or about 2.7%, of the global man-made emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) in 2007.

The MEPC is also expected to consider the methodology and criteria for a comprehensive impact assessment of proposed market-based measures to reduce GHG emissions, which would complement the technical and operational measures already adopted.

Draft NOx Technical Code amendments to be considered
The MEPC is expected to consider, for approval with a view to subsequent adoption, draft amendments to the NOx Technical Code, 2008, concerning use of dual-fuel engines.

Guidelines for implementation of MARPOL Annex VI regulation 13 (nitrogen oxides) to be considered
The MEPC will consider draft guidelines, as required by regulation 13.2.2 of MARPOL Annex VI, in respect of non-identical replacement engines not required to meet the Tier III limit; and a draft unified interpretation on the “time of the replacement or addition” of an engine for the applicable NOx Tier standard for the supplement to the IAPP Certificate.

The final report of the Correspondence Group on the Review of the Status of the Technological Developments to Implement the Tier III NOx Emissions Standard will be considered by the Committee.

Ballast water management systems up for approval
The MEPC will consider the reports of the twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth meetings of the Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environment Protection (GESAMP) Ballast Water Working Group (held during 2012-2013), with a view to granting Basic Approval to three, and Final Approval to four, ballast water management systems that make use of Active Substances.

The MEPC will consider the text of a draft IMO Assembly resolution on the application of regulation B-3 of the BWM Convention to ease and facilitate the smooth implementation of the Convention, for submission to the IMO Assembly 28th session (25 November to 5 December 2013).

The MEPC will also be invited to approve BWM-related guidance, among which is the Guidance concerning ballast water sampling and analysis for trial use.

The MEPC is also expected to adopt a draft revised MEPC resolution regarding information reporting on type-approved ballast water management systems.

MARPOL amendments to make RO Code mandatory to be adopted
The MEPC is expected to adopt draft amendments to MARPOL Annexes I and II to make mandatory the Code for Recognized Organizations (ROs). The Code will provide a consolidated text containing criteria against which ROs (which may be authorized by flag States to carry out surveys and issue certificates on their behalf) are assessed and authorized/recognized, and give guidance for subsequent monitoring of ROs by Administrations.

Also up for adoption are draft amendments to Form A and Form B of Supplements to the IOPP Certificate; and amendments to the Condition Assessment Scheme, to make reference to the International Code on the enhanced programme of inspections during surveys of bulk carriers and oil tankers, 2011 (2011 ESP Code).

Recycling of ships – hazardous materials inventory to be reviewed
The MEPC is expected to further discuss the development of threshold values and exemptions applicable to the materials to be listed in inventories of hazardous materials taking into account the outcome of a correspondence group, and to consider the need to amend, accordingly, the 2011 Guidelines for the development of the inventory of hazardous materials, required under the treaty.

Guidance on evaluating biofouling guidelines to be approved
The MEPC is expected to approve a draft MEPC circular on Guidance for evaluating the 2011 Guidelines for the control and management of ships' biofouling to minimize the transfer of invasive aquatic species.

IMO Sub-Committee Agrees IGC Revision

During IMO BLG, 17th session, 4 to 8 February 2013

15 02 2013

The draft revised International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships Carrying Liquefied Gases in Bulk (the IGC Code) was agreed by the Sub-Committee on Bulk Liquids and Gases (BLG) when it met for its 17th session.

The revised Code has been developed following a comprehensive five-year review and is intended to take into account the latest advances in science and technology. It will be submitted to the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC 92) in June, for approval, with a view to adoption at MSC 93 in 2014.

The IGC Code was first adopted in 1983, to provide an international standard for the safe carriage by sea of liquefied gases (and other substances listed in the Code) in bulk, by prescribing the design and construction standards of ships carrying such cargoes, and the equipment they should carry. The IGC Code was made mandatory under the SOLAS convention for new ships built after 1986.

Various amendments have been adopted since then, but the new draft represents the first major revision of the IGC Code. Provisions of the revised IGC Code will apply to new ships, unless expressly stated otherwise. Parallel work continued during the session to develop the new international code of safety for ships using gases or other low-flash point fuels (IGF Code), which included preparation of draft amendments to SOLAS to make the IGF Code mandatory. Once finalized, both the draft IGF Code and SOLAS amendments will be put forward to the MSC for approval and adoption as a package.The draft IGF Code focuses on liquid natural gas as fuel but is also intended to cover other low flashpoint fuels.

A correspondence group was re-established to continue the work on finalizing the draft IGF Code and related SOLAS amendments.


Danish special requirement becomes international


Means of escape from machinery spaces discussed during Sub- Committee on Fire Protection
24 jan 2013 

One more Danish special requirement is on its way towards internationalisation. At its recent session, the Sub-Committee on Fire Protection of United Nations International Maritime Organization (IMO) agreed on a proposal.

There must be two means of escape from both machinery control rooms and from the main workshop when located within the delimitation of the machinery space. The proposal was forwarded for approval by the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC).

The Sub-Committee on Fire Protection (FP) held its 56th session in London from 7 to 11 January 2013

Among the main issues on the agenda were the following:

Means of escape from machinery spaces

Two different proposals had been submitted regarding means of escape from machinery spaces: one from Denmark and one from Bahamas et al. It was generally agreed to finalize this agenda item and to provide members of the engine crew with a greater possibility of escaping machinery spaces in case of fire. Agreement was reached about a proposal to amend SOLAS, chapter II-2, regulation 13.4, by introducing requirements for two means of escape from machinery control rooms and from the main workshop in the machinery space and for protection of stairways forming part of a means of escape by means of a steel plate on the lower side. It was also agreed to propose identical regulations for passenger and cargo ships. The amendments were forwarded for approval by MSC 92. Furthermore, it was agreed that the regulations should apply to new ships. The provisions correspond to a great extent to the previous Danish special requirements for means of escape from machinery spaces.

The use of GRP (glass-fibre reinforced plastic) in ships

Several proposals had been submitted to the Sub-Committee on the use of GRP in ships' design, for which reason this issue was thoroughly discussed. Also here, the views expressed covered all aspects from support of the proposals to scepticism towards re-introducing combustible materials in ships that may generate noxious smoke. On the basis of the debate, it was agreed to establish a correspondence group to continue work on the development of guidelines for use when assessing and testing FRP designs when SOLAS, regulation II-2/17 is applied. The correspondence group was to report to the next session of the Sub-Committee.

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Source: DMA

 SOLAS amendments on lifeboat safety enter into force


Jan 2,2013

Amendments to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) aimed at preventing accidents during lifeboat launching entered into force on 1 January 2013.

The amendments, adopted in May 2011, add a new paragraph 5 to SOLAS regulation III/1, to require lifeboat on-load release mechanisms not complying with new International Life-Saving Appliances (LSA) Code requirements to be replaced, no later than the first scheduled dry-docking of the ship after 1 July 2014 but, in any case, not later than 1 July 2019.

The SOLAS amendment is intended to establish new, stricter, safety standards for lifeboat release and retrieval systems, and will require the assessment and possible replacement of a large number of lifeboat release hooks.



International convention on training and certification for fishing vessel personnel into force
STCW-F 1995 entered into force on 29 September 2012

The International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Fishing Vessel Personnel, 1995 (STCW-F 1995) entered into force on 29 September 2012.

The STCW-F Convention sets the certification and minimum training requirements for crews of seagoing fishing vessels of 24 metres in length and above. The Convention consists of 15 Articles and an annex containing technical regulations.

The STCW-F Convention has been ratified by 15 States: Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Kiribati, Latvia, Mauritania, Morocco, Namibia, Norway, Palau, the Russian Federation, Sierra Leone, Spain, the Syrian Arab Republic and Ukraine, and also by Faroes, Denmark.

The entry into force of the STCW-F Convention comes just days before a diplomatic conference, to be held in Cape Town, South Africa, from 9 to 11 October, which will consider adopting an Agreement on the implementation of IMO's other instrument relating to fishing vessel safety, the 1993 Protocol relating to the 1977 Torremolinos International Convention for the Safety of Fishing Vessels.

The conference is expected to consider and adopt an agreement on the implementation of the provisions of the 1993 Protocol. The agreement would also amend the technical provisions of the 1993 Protocol, with the aim of bringing them into force as soon as possible thereafter.


Privately Contracted Armed Security Personnel: IMO Guidance and Vetting Arrangement with "Flag Victor.
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International Code for the Application of Fire Test Procedures mandatory from 1 July
Amendments to 2010 FTP Code
Amendments to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) to make mandatory the International Code for the Application of Fire Test Procedures (2010 FTP Code) came into force on 1 July 2012, thereby enhancing the fire safety provisions onboard all ships.
The 2010 FTP Code provides the international requirements for laboratory testing, type-approval and fire test procedures for products referenced under SOLAS chapter II-2 (which includes regulations on fire protection, fire detection and fire extinction).
The 2010 FTP Code includes the following: test for non-combustibility; test for smoke and toxicity; test for "A", "B" and "F" class divisions; test for fire door control systems; test for surface flammability (surface materials and primary deck coverings); test for vertically supported textiles and films; test for upholstered furniture; test for bedding components; test for fire-restricting materials for high-speed craft; and test for fire-resisting divisions of high-speed craft.
It also includes annexes on products which may be installed without testing and/or approval and on fire protection materials and required approval test methods. 

Other amendments entering into force on 1 July 2012 Other amendments to international treaties which entered into force on 1 July 2012 include:

• amendments to SOLAS regulation V/18 to require annual testing of automatic identification systems (AIS);
• amendments to SOLAS regulation V/23 on pilot transfer arrangements, to update and to improve safety aspects of pilot transfer;
• amendments to safety certificates in the SOLAS appendix and SOLAS Protocol of 1988, relating to references to alternative design and arrangements;
• amendments to the International Convention for Safe Containers, 1972, to include addition of new paragraphs in Regulation 1 Safety Approval Plate, specifying the validity of and elements to be included in approved examination programmes; the addition of a new test for containers being approved for operation with one door removed; and the addition of a new Annex III Control and Verification, which provides specific control measures to enable authorized officers to assess the integrity of structurally sensitive components of containers and to help them decide whether a container is safe to continue in transportation or whether transport should be stopped until remedial action has been taken; and
• a new chapter 9 of the International Code for Fire Safety Systems (FSS Code), related to fixed fire detection and fire alarm systems


 IMO mandatory inspection regime for tankers and bulk carriers
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) issues Resolution A.1049(27) regarding IMO mandatory inspection regime for tankers and bulk carriers  which contains the approved text of the International Code on the Enhanced Programme of Inspections During Surveys for Bulk Carriers and Oil Tankers, 2011 (2011 ESP Code).
The 2011 ESP Code, which was previously a set of IMO Guidelines under resolution A.744(18), will become mandatory when the amendments to SOLAS XI-1/2 are adopted at the IMO's Maritime Safety Committee in May 2012








IA557E - Manual on Oil Pollution (Section I) , 2011 Edition
This Section of the Manual on Oil Pollution is intended to provide practical guidance related to the prevention of pollution from ships, and describes procedures for the handling of oil cargoes, bunkering, ship-to-ship transfer operations, transfer operations involving offshore units and operations in ice-covered waters. It also provides an overview of the various prevention practices, as a complement to the more detailed industry standards and Codes of Practice, currently available.

The information provided is not intended to supersede or replace any information, law, or regulation contained in any other publication with respect to the waters and areas to which it pertains.

ISBN: 9789280142440


16.00 GBP














22.November 2010
 Mandatory fire test procedures Code and improvements to life boat release hooks set to be adopted by IMO Maritime Safety meeting
Life-Saving Appliances, 2010 Edition, just published
9 November 2010
The 2010 edition of Life Saving Appliances is now available from the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
This publication includes the latest consolidated versions of the mandatory International Life-Saving Appliance (LSA) Code, the Revised Recommendation on Testing of Life-Saving Appliances and the Code of Practice for the Evaluation, Testing and Acceptance of Prototype Novel Life-Saving Appliances.
The updated requirements and recommendations in the new edition include those relating to: 
• stowage, fitting and equipment of liferafts;
• certification and fitting of lifeboats;
• new requirements for fast rescue boats;
• requirements for lifeboat and rescue boat launching appliances;
• carrying capacity of free-fall lifeboats;
• changes in the average weight of persons to be used for the design and equipment of life-saving appliances;
• extensive new requirements for lifejackets, including the introduction of infant and child lifejackets;
• extensive associated changes to testing requirements for life-saving appliances, including the introduction of reference test devices.









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