Article

Latest AMSA Notice Emphasises The Need For Safe Pilot Transfer Arrangements


published on 18 February 2022 160 -

Photo and text by AMSA

Background

AMSA notes with concern that since November 2017 several pilots’ lives have been placed at risk, in six separate incidents where man ropes have parted, or its securing point has failed. In addition, AMSA regularly receives reports and complaints about non-compliant pilot transfer arrangements

Shipowners, operators, masters and crews are reminded that pilot transfer arrangements, including pilot ladders, must comply with Marine Order 21 (Safety and emergency arrangements) 2016 (MO21).

MO21 implements Australia’s obligations under the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Chapter V Regulation 23 (SOLAS V/23).

This notice supersedes 03/2019

Pilot transfer arrangement standards

Whenever a pilot or other person embarks or disembarks from a ship by ladder, they entrust their safety to the pilot transfer arrangements provided by the ship and the pilot boat crew.

The requirements in SOLAS V/23 are the minimum standards for equipment installed and arrangements for pilot transfers on ships on or after 1 July 2012. The IMO standards can be found in:


  • IMO Resolution A.1045(27) – Pilot transfer arrangements, and
  • IMO Resolution A.1108(29) – Amendments to the Recommendations on Pilot Transfer Arrangements (Resolution A.1045(27)).

SOLAS V/23.2.3 also states a pilot ladder shall be certified by the manufacturer as complying with SOLAS V/23 or “with an international standard acceptable to the Organization” and refers to ISO 799:2019 “Ships and marine technology – pilot ladders”.

Compliance with this particular provision of SOLAS V/23 can be met when a manufacturer has certified the pilot ladder complies with either of the above standards, noting they are not identical.

Paragraph 10.1 of Part A of the International Safety Management Code (ISM) requires vessel operators establish procedures to ensure a ship is maintained in conformity with the relevant rules and regulations, including pilot transfer arrangements. Such procedures should include regular inspections of the pilot transfer arrangement and storage of such equipment when not in use.

To read the full notice here.

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