Goal-based standards under review at IMO's Maritime Safety Committee
Safety Committee - 79th session: 1-10 December 2004
Goal-based standards under review at IMO's Maritime Safety Committee
The development of goal-based standards for new ship construction will be
high on the agenda when IMO's Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) meets at the Organization's
London Headquarters for its 79th session from 1 to 10 December 2004.
issues on the MSC agenda include large passenger ship safety and implementation
of the maritime security measures adopted by IMO. The agenda also includes the
adoption of amendments to the SOLAS Convention1,including a revised chapter
on bulk carrier safety, amendments to make mandatory the carriage of simplified
voyage data recorders on existing cargo ships and the introduction of a unique
company identification scheme. The MSC is also expected to adopt a number of
ships' routeing measures and the proposed Western European waters mandatory
ship reporting scheme.
standards for new ships
In order to facilitate the debate on goal-based new ship construction standards,
the MSC Chairman has invited submissions on ten potential subjects. These include
whether or not goal-based standards should set prescriptive requirements or
describe specific solutions, or prescribe high-level goals of safety and pollution
prevention; whether the goal-based standards approach should be extended to
other areas (e.g. machinery and electrical systems, lifesaving appliances, fire
safety, etc.) so that the same goal-setting regime covers the entire ship; how
to verify compliance with goal-based standards during the design, construction,
operation and maintenance of ships and whether IMO should do this, and if so,
how. In response, 19 countries and three international organizations have between
them submitted 26 documents for consideration, illustrating the importance IMO
Members attach to the issue.
The MSC is expected
to establish a Working Group to consider the documents submitted to work towards
developing a clearly defined goal-based regulatory framework for ship construction,
the details of which will then need to be further developed and enhanced over
subsequent MSC sessions. Special attention will be given to the role of classification
societies in their implementation.
The MSC is expected to re-establish the Working Group on Maritime Security to
consider issues relating to the implementation of the special measures to enhance
maritime security which were adopted by the Organization in 2002 and entered
into force on 1 July 2004.
Topics for discussion
are expected to include: the possible development of a checklist for conducting
port facility security self-assessments; a standardized data-set of security-related
information that ships could be expected to provide in advance of their arrival
in port; false security alerts and distress/security double alerts; long-range
identification and tracking; sharing of information on maritime security and
concerns over the publishing of data generated by Automatic Identification Systems
The MSC is expected to re-establish the Working Group on Large Passenger Ship
Safety to progress the work on this subject. Topics for discussion include a
review of the work programme, the definition of the term "large passenger
ship" and the development of "time to recover" criteria.
The MSC will consider, with a view to adoption, a draft amended SOLAS chapter
XII (Additional safety measures for bulk carriers), incorporating revisions
to some regulations and new requirements relating to double-side skin bulk carriers.
The draft amendments
include the addition of a new regulation 14 on restrictions from sailing with
any hold empty and requirements for double-side skin construction as an optional
alternative to single-side skin construction. If adopted, the option of double-side
skin construction would apply to new bulk carriers of 150m in length and over,
carrying solid bulk cargoes having a density of 1,000 kg/m3 and above.
The MSC is also
expected to adopt standards and criteria for side structures of bulk carriers
of single-side skin construction and standards for owners' inspections and maintenance
of bulk carrier hatch covers.
on bulk carriers
The MSC is expected to adopt an amendment to SOLAS regulation 31 in chapter
III (Life-saving appliances and arrangements) to make mandatory the carriage
of free-fall lifeboats on bulk carriers.
Data Recorders - SOLAS amendments
The MSC will consider, with a view to adoption, draft amendments to regulation
20 of SOLAS chapter V (Safety of Navigation) on a phased-in carriage
requirement for a shipborne simplified voyage data recorder (S-VDR).
The draft regulation
requires a VDR, which may be an S-VDR, to be fitted on existing cargo ships
of 3,000 gross tonnage and upwards, phasing in the requirement on cargo ships
of 20,000 gross tonnage and upwards first, to be followed by cargo ships of
3,000 gross tonnage and upwards.
The S-VDR is not
required to store the same level of detailed data as a standard VDR, but nonetheless
should maintain a store, in a secure and retrievable form, of information concerning
the position, movement, physical status, command and control of a vessel over
the period leading up to and following an incident.
IMO unique company
and registered owners identification number scheme
The MSC will consider, with a view to adoption, draft amendments to SOLAS chapter
XI-1 (Special measures to enhance maritime safety) to add a new Regulation
3-1 Company and registered owner identification number which will require
companies and registered owners of seagoing ships of 100 gross tonnage and upwards
to be provided with a unique identification number to be inserted on certificates,
documents and the continuous synopsis record.
The MSC will also
consider for adoption consequential amendments to the ISM and ISPS Codes to
add the unique company identification number and registered owner's unique identification
number in the Document of Compliance, the Safety Management Certificate, Interim
Document of Compliance and the Interim Safety Management Certificate, International
Ship Security Certificate and the Interim International Ship Security Certificate.
ship reporting system (WETREP) in the Western European Waters PSSA
The MSC will consider with a view to adoption the establishment of a new mandatory
ship reporting system (WETREP) as an associated protective measure (APM) in
the Western European Waters PSSA. The Western European Waters PSSA was designated
by the MEPC at its 52nd session in October 2004.
of the revised STCW Convention
The list of Parties deemed to be giving full and complete effect to the provisions
of the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and
Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW), 1978, as amended, will be updated when IMO
Secretary-General Mitropoulos submits his report on those countries whose evaluations
have been completed since the previous MSC meeting.
The MSC will consider for adoption an amendment to the form of certificate contained
in the relevant Conventions, Protocols, mandatory Codes and non-mandatory Codes
and guidelines to add the words "Completion date of the survey on which
this certificate is based" in order to clarify, for control purposed, the
date of the last survey.
Port State control
The Committee will review issues relating to port State control, including the
recommendations of the second and third IMO Workshops for Port State control
MoU (Agreement) Secretaries and Directors of Information Centres. The recommendations
include establishing interregional information exchange and harmonizing the
coding systems used across the MoUs/Agreements.
of Marine Casualties and Incidents
The Committee is expected to consider a proposal to revise the Code for the
Investigation of Marine Casualties and Incidents (resolution A.849(20) as amended
by resolution A.884(21)). The aim would be to redraft and reformat the Code
to make it more effective as a tool for the conduct of investigations. A proposal
to look at ways to make the Code mandatory under SOLAS will also be discussed.
The MSC will also consider the following draft amendments for adoption:
chapter II-1 regulation 18 Construction and initial tests of watertight
doors, sidescuttles, etc., in passenger ships and cargo ships to allow
testing of watertight doors with a prototype pressure test in certain circumstances.
Also regulation 45 - Precautions against shock, fire and other hazards
of electrical origin to replace paragraph 10 and add a new paragraph
11 in order to control the installation of electrical equipment in spaces
where flammable mixtures are likely to collect and in hazardous locations
chapter V regulation 19 Carriage requirements for shipborne navigational
systems and equipment to add the words "being clearly readable
by the helmsman at the main steering position" in paragraph 2.5 relating
to carriage of a gyro compass, or other means to determine and display heading
by shipborne non-magnetic means.
chapter VII regulation 10 to delete the superfluous words "For the
purpose of this regulation, the requirements of the Code shall be treated
chapter V - addition of Simplified voyage data recorder (S-VDR) to the Record
of Equipment for the Cargo Ship Safety Equipment Certificate (Form E).
Code for Application of Fire Test Procedures (FTP Code) in Part 2 - Smoke
and toxicity test - the addition of "(200 ppm for floor coverings)"
in the table of limits in 2.6 Classification criteria, 2.6.2 Toxicity.
Code of Safety for High-Speed Craft, 2000 (2000 HSC Code) relating to buoyant
spaces in Chapter 2 - Buoyancy, stability and subdivision.
Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships Carrying Dangerous Chemicals
in Bulk (IBC Code).
Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships Carrying Liquefied Gases
in Bulk (IGC Code) - to reflect the draft amendments to SOLAS chapter II-1
Regulation 45 - Precautions against shock, fire and other hazards of
Code - amendments to Table A-VI/2-1 - Specifications of minimum standards
of competence in survival craft and rescue boats other than fast rescue
ships' routeing measures
The MSC is expected to adopt the following ships' routeing measures:
separation schemes (TSSs)
to the Cape Fear river (United States)
Mina Al-Ahmadi (Kuwait)
to existing TSSs
Puget Sound and its approaches in Haro Strait, Boundary Pass and in the
Strait of Georgia (Canada and the United States)
the approaches to Chesapeake Bay (United States)
Cape Roca and Off Cape S. Vicente (Portugal)
the approaches to Puerto San Martin (Peru)
of the TSS Off Berlengas (Portugal)
measures other than TSSs
of a new Area to be Avoided and a mandatory No-Anchoring Area in the West
Cameron Area of the Gulf of Mexico (United States)
to the Notes in the existing deep-water route in the southern approach to
Chesapeake Bay (United States)
of a new Area to be Avoided in the region of the Berlengas Islands (Portugal)
to General Provisions on Ships' Routeing
The MSC will consider, with a view to adoption, subject to confirmation by the
Assembly, amendments to the General Provisions on Ships' Routeing (resolution
A.572(14), as amended). Amendments to Guidelines and Criteria for Ship Reporting
Systems (resolution MSC.43(64), as amended by resolution MSC.111(73) will also
be considered. The purpose is to standardize the use of WGS 84 datum for ships'
routeing and ship reporting systems.
1International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS),
1974, as amended.
* * *
IMO is the United Nations agency concerned with safety and security of shipping
and protection of the marine environment and is concerned with ensuring ships
comply with international standards, including financial security. The Maritime
Safety Committee is the highest technical body of the Organization. Delegates
from all 163 member States may attend. The main function of the MSC is to consider
any matter within the scope of the Organization that directly affects maritime
safety and security. It has the mandate to adopt amendments to conventions, such
as the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS), Collision Regulations, Load Lines,
etc. It is assisted in its work by nine sub-committees which are also open to
all Member States. They deal with the following subjects: Bulk Liquids and Gases;
Carriage of Dangerous Goods; Solid Cargoes and Containers; Fire Protection; Radiocommunications
and Search and Rescue; Safety of Navigation; Ship Design and Equipment; Stability
and Load Lines and Fishing Vessel Safety; Standards of Training and Watchkeeping
and Flag State Implementation.
session of the Maritime Safety Committee will be held from 1 to 10 December
2004 under the chairmanship of Mr. Tom Allan (United Kingdom).
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