Plans to update UK law around rules governing the fire safety and protection of vessels are going out to public consultation as part of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s commitment to ensuring seafarer safety.
The new regulations will implement updated international rules on fire protection, fire detection and fire extinction. This includes provision for improvements made to structural fire protection, escape from fire and operational requirements.
There are already stringent rules around protecting seafarers in the event of fire on board vessels and these amendments to the international regulations are in addition to those.
These amendments to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, 1974 (SOLAS) will be given effect in the UK by way of the Merchant Shipping (Fire Protection) Regulations 2022
Katy Ware, Director of UK Maritime Services, said:
“We are committed to ensuring the safety of life at sea, and by updating the legislation relating to the safety requirements for fire protection we are improving the safety not only of ships, and those on board them, operating under the UK flag, but also for ships operating in UK waters.
Vessels within the scope of the SOLAS Convention should already be operating to this international standard. However, this simplified and updated UK legislation will make it absolutely clear what is expected.”
It is planned to bring the rules into UK law later this year (2022) and for them to come into force early next year.
Make your news known and have your say. Details about the consulation, which closes at 11:45pm on 12 September 2022 can be found by following this link.