USCG to update type approval requirements for survival craft equipment

USCG to update type approval requirements for survival craft equipment
USCG to update type approval requirements for survival craft equipment

The US Coast Guard (USCG) is proposing to update the type approval requirements for survival craft equipment required to carry on U.S. flagged vessels. The proposed rule is deregulatory and would remove US Coast Guard type approval requirements for nine of these types of survival craft equipment and replace them with the requirement that the manufacturer self-certify that the equipment complies with a consensus standard.

Comments and related material must be received by the US Coast Guard on or before December 4, 2020.

The US Coast Guard proposes to amend several approval and carriage requirements in title 46 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Specifically, it is proposing to remove current approval requirements for first-aid kits in part 121 under subchapter K, part 160 under subchapter Q, and part 184 under subchapter T, and to update those requirements to industry standards.

In addition, it proposes to remove approval requirements for certain survival craft equipment and provisions in part 160 under subchapter Q and in part 169 under subchapter R, and updating those requirements to industry standards.

Finally, USCG us proposing to update the carriage requirements for lifesaving systems on certain inspected vessels in part 199 under subchapter W, by replacing some Coast Guard-specific standards with voluntary consensus standards.

The proposed rule would add a new subpart 160.046 (Emergency Provisions) to part 160 of title 46 of the CFR to consolidate and update applicable standards, including making mandatory several voluntary consensus standards consistent with the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995, Public Law 104-113 (codified as a note to 15 U.S.C. 272).

This rule would make mandatory three voluntary consensus standards from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO):
– ISO 18813:2006 “Ships and marine technology—Survival equipment for survival craft and rescue boats” (referred to as ISO 18813);
– ISO 17339:2018 “Ships and marine technology—Sea anchors for survival craft and rescue boats” (referred to as ISO 17339);
– ISO 25862:2009 “Ships and marine technology—Marine magnetic compasses, binnacles and azimuth reading devices” (referred to as ISO 25862).

While the IMO does specify some standards for survival craft equipment affected by this proposed rule, it does not stipulate that the affected  equipment be approved by the Administration. In some cases (such as first-aid kits and drinking water), the LSA Code references ISO 18813 as an acceptable standard for the equipment to meet, whereas in others (such as fishing tackle), the LSA Code merely requires that the equipment be carried aboard the specified survival craft.

Read another USCG article: USCG: Work instruction from USCG for laid up inspected and/or examined vessels

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