MARPOL and SOLAS amendments take effect

03 Jan 2014

The New Year saw amendments to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) and the International Convention of the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) enter into force and take effect.

The amendments which entered into force on 1 January 2014 cover passenger ship safety, the prohibition of blending onboard, the United States Caribbean Sea Emission Control Area and the Winter Seasonal Zone off the southern tip of Africa.

Other amendments now in force include the testing of free-fall lifeboats and their release systems, enhanced surveys and ships’ safe manning levels, where very ship must establish appropriate minimum safe manning levels following a “transparent” procedure and issue a safe manning document or equivalent.

An amendment to SOLAS chapter VII was also made to replace regulation four on documents, covering transports information relating to the carriage of dangerous goods in packaged form and the container/vehicle packing certificate.

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International Maritime Organization

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