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Convention relating to Civil Liability in the Field of Maritime Carriage of Nuclear Material (NUCLEAR)

Adoption: 17 December 1971; Entry into force: 15 July 1975


In 1971 IMO, in association with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the European Nuclear Energy Agency of the Organization for Economic Co‑operation and Development (OECD), convened a Conference which adopted a Convention to regulate liability in respect of damage arising from the maritime carriage of nuclear substances.
 
The purpose of this Convention is to resolve difficulties and conflicts which arise from the simultaneous application to nuclear damage of certain maritime conventions dealing with shipowners' liability, as well as other conventions which place liability arising from nuclear incidents on the operators of the nuclear installations from which or to which the material in question was being transported.
 
The 1971 Convention provides that a person otherwise liable for damage caused in a nuclear incident shall be exonerated for liability if the operator of the nuclear installation is also liable for such damage by virtue of the Paris Convention of 29 July 1960 on Third Party Liability in the Field of Nuclear Energy; or the Vienna Convention of 21 May 1963 on Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage; or national law which is similar in the scope of protection given to the persons who suffer damage.