July 11, 2005
Paris MOU plans GMDSS crackdown
The maritime authorities of the 22 countries that are signatories to the Paris Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control (the Paris MOU) are to mount a Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) to ensure that ships' radio stations comply with Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) requirements.
The 22 port state control authorities--the EU Members plus Canada, Croatia, Iceland, Norway and the Russian Federation--will also verify that radio operators are able to demonstrate that the station is in a satisfactory working condition and used for its intended purpose.
The campaign will commence on September 1, 2005 and will last three months, concluding on November 30, 2005.
During every port state control inspection the ship's GMDSS, its equipment, operation and correct recording of communications and maintenance will be verified in more detail for compliance with SOLAS, the STCW Code and the ISM Code.
Port state control officers will use a questionnaire, listing 15 questions in total, to cover this concentrated inspection.
When there are clear grounds for believing that the requirements are not being met, a more detailed inspection may be carried out.
Deficiencies will be recorded and the master will be instructed to rectify these either before departure, at the next port, or within 14 days.
Serious deficiencies may lead to the detention of the ship until they have been rectified.
Any detention will be entered in the monthly list of detentions published by the Secretariat of the Paris MOU.
As with all PSC inspections any outstanding deficiencies (GMDSS or other types) will warrant a further and possibly more detailed inspection at any other Paris MOU region port until the ship is clear of deficiencies.
It is expected that approximately 4,000 inspections will be carried out during the CIC.
All inspections will be inserted in the SIReNaC database of the Paris MOU and will be recorded on an evaluation form. The results of the campaign will be analyzed early next year. A report will be submitted to the Port State Control Committee of the Paris MOU and made available for publication.