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Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Equipment (DE) – 55th session, 21-25 March 2011

March 25, 2011

Amendments on lifeboat release and retrieval systems agreed by Sub-Committee
Proposed new requirements for lifeboat release and retrieval systems were agreed by the Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Equipment (DE), when it met for its 55th session, for submission to the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) at its 89th session for adoption and approval.
 
The package of measures had been referred back to the Sub-Committee by the MSC, after further review by an intersessional working group, which met prior to the DE meeting. The Sub-Committee agreed a draft new SOLAS regulation III/1.5,  draft amendments to the LSA Code, draft Guidelines for evaluation and replacement of lifeboat release and retrieval systems and draft amendments to the Revised recommendation on testing of life-saving appliances, including the use of FPDs (fall preventer devices),
 
The draft SOLAS amendments require the safer design of on-load release mechanisms and the replacement of existing lifeboat release hooks not complying with the amended LSA Code, in accordance with Guidelines agreed by the Sub-Committee.  
 
The Sub-Committee also continued work on making mandatory the provisions of MSC.1/Circ.1206/Rev.1 Measures to prevent accidents with lifeboats and prepared draft amendments to SOLAS regulation III/20.11.2 regarding testing of free-fall lifeboat, for submission to MSC 89 for approval, with a view to subsequent adoption.
 
Guidance on standardization of lifeboat control arrangements
The Sub-Committee agreed a draft MSC circular on Guidelines for the standardization of lifeboat control arrangements, for approval by MSC 90.
 
Revised guidelines for surveys of bulk carriers and oil tankers
The Sub-Committee completed work on the development of amendments to resolution A.744(18) (Guidelines for the enhanced programme of inspections during surveys of bulk carriers and oil tankers), and prepared a draft Assembly resolution on the Adoption of the Code on the enhanced programme of inspections during surveys of bulk carriers and oil tankers (ESP Code), for submission to MSC 89 for approval, with a view to adoption at the Assembly. It also agreed associated draft amendments to SOLAS regulation XI-1/2, to make the new Code mandatory, for submission to MSC 89 for approval and subsequent adoption at MSC 90.
 
Mandatory code for ships operating in polar waters
The Sub-Committee continued its work on the development of a mandatory Code for ships operating in polar waters, which is intended to cover the full range of shipping-related matters relevant to navigation in waters surrounding the two poles – ship design, construction and equipment; operational and training concerns; search and rescue; and, equally important, the protection of the unique environment and eco-systems of the polar regions.
A working Group during the session further developed the technical parts of the draft Code and the Correspondence Group on Development of a Mandatory Polar Code was re-established to continue the work, taking into account the outcome of other bodies meeting in the interim, including the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) and the Sub-Committees on Safety of Navigation (NAV).
 
Measures to promote integrated bilge water treatment systems
The Sub-Committee agreed a draft MEPC circular on Amendments to the 2008 Revised Guidelines for systems for handling oily wastes in machinery spaces of ships incorporating guidance notes for integrated bilge water treatment systems (IBTS) (MEPC.1/Circ.642, as amended by MEPC.1/Circ.676), including a format of Statement of Fact for ships which have installed IBTS on a voluntary basis, for submission to MEPC 62 for approval.
 
Guidelines for cargo oil tank coating and corrosion protection
The Sub-Committee agreed a draft MSC circular on Guidelines on procedures for in-service maintenance and repair of coating systems for cargo oil tanks of crude oil tankers, for submission to MSC 89 for approval.
It also prepared a draft MSC circular on Guidelines on exemptions for crude oil tankers solely engaged in the carriage of cargoes and cargo handling operations not causing corrosion, for submission to MSC 90 for approval.
Safety of tenders operating from passenger ships

The Sub-Committee agreed a draft MSC circular on Safety provisions applicable to tenders operating from passenger ships, for submission to MSC 90 for approval.

Guidelines for a visible element to general alarm systems on passenger ships
The Sub-Committee agreed a draft MSC circular on Guidelines for a visible element to general alarm systems on passenger ships, to accommodate passengers who are deaf or hard of hearing, for submission to MSC 90 for approval.
 
Protection against noise on board ships
 The Sub-Committee continued its work on the protection against noise on board ships, with a view to revising the Code on noise levels on board ships (resolution A.468(XII)) and re-established the Correspondence Group on the Review of the Code on Noise Levels on Board Ships to finalize the revised draft code. 
 
Performance standards for recovery systems
The Sub-Committee progressed work on the development of performance standards for recovery systems for all types of ships, with a view to finalizing draft performance standards and the associated draft new SOLAS regulation III/17-1 at the next session (DE 56).
 
Interpretation of SPS Code relating to offshore industry vessels
The Sub-Committee progressed its work relating to the classification of offshore industry vessels and consideration of the need for a code for offshore construction support vessels, and finalized a draft MSC circular on Unified interpretations of the Code for Special Purpose Ships, 2008, for submission to MSC 90 for approval. 
 
Circular on counterfeit and sub-standard life-saving appliances
The Sub-Committee agreed a draft circular, for submission to MSC 90 for approval, on Awareness of counterfeit and sub-standard life-saving appliances which is aimed at raising awareness of the problem of such life-saving appliances