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IMO (SLF 55) Verification of damage stability requirements & mandatory carriage of stability instruments

The IMO’s Sub-committee on Stability and Load Lines and on Fishing Vessels Safety (SLF) at its latest meeting (SLF 55) this week reviewed and finalised the draft Guidelines for the verification of damage stability requirements.

The Sub-committee had, at its last meeting in January 2012 (Read the Weekly News Report here), also developed draft amendments to mandatory instruments. These amendments to MARPOL Annex I, IBC, BCH, GC and IGC Codes as well as the Guidelines under the Harmonized System of Survey and Certification (HSSC) were also reviewed and finalised at this meeting.

The guidelines may be accessed here and amendments here.

In addition to the review and finalisation of the Guidelines and the amendments to the instruments, the application of amendments to mandatory instruments was debated (procedures for preparation and approval of tanker damage stability calculations, instructions for operation and demonstration of damage stability compliance – mandatory stability instruments for ships to which MARPOL Annex I, IBC and IGC Codes apply).

In this regard, the Sub-committee deliberated on whether compliance for existing ships should be aligned with the intermediate survey or the renewal survey schedule.

Led by INTERTANKO, the Sub-committee agreed that the application of the amendments to existing ships should be in line with the first renewal survey after the date of entry into force of these amendments. This would give the existing fleet five years to comply with the requirements.

In light of the agreement that the Guidelines should be issued as a completed package together with the amendments to IMO instruments requiring the mandatory carriage of stability computers, the Sub-committee will submit both to the Maritime Safety Committee for approval at its 92nd session 12-21 June 2013 (MSC 92).

As we go to press, the Sub-committee has yet to publish its final report which will be provided via Weekly News once as soon as it has been published.

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