4/9/2018: Recap of the 5th Session of the IMO Sub-Committee on Ship Systems and Equipment

International Maritime Organization’s Sub-Committee on Ship Systems and Equipment (SSE) held its 5th session at IMO Headquarters in London from March 12 – 16, 2018. The U.S. delegation was led by Ms. Brandi Baldwin, Chief of the Lifesaving and Fire Safety Division. The Sub-Committee established three ad hoc working groups on fire protection, life-saving appliances, and the development of measures for onboard lifting appliances and winches, and an ad hoc drafting group on the development of guidelines for cold ironing of ships.

Fire Protection Working Group

The working group on Fire Protection completed draft amendments for MSC.1/Circ.1430, Revised guidelines for the design and approval of fixed water-based fire-fighting systems for ro-ro spaces and special category spaces. The working group also drafted terms of reference for a correspondence group, which include developing amendments to MSC.1/Circ.1315, Guidelines for the approval of fixed dry chemical powder fire-extinguishing systems for the protection of ships carrying liquefied gases in bulk, and guidelines for minimizing the incidence and consequences of fires on ro-ro spaces and special category spaces of new and existing ro-ro passenger ships.

Lifesaving Working Group

The working group on Life-Saving Appliances was instructed to address four agenda items dealing with: functional requirements in support of the approval and analysis of alternative design and arrangements under SOLAS Chapter III; new requirements for ventilation in fully enclosed lifeboats; requirements for launching appliances under IMO LSA Code VI/6.1.1.3; and life-saving appliances and arrangements for ships operating in polar waters. Draft amendments to the LSA Code were completed and agreed to by the group. The discussion and development of life-saving appliances for ships operating in polar waters and functional requirements for SOLAS Chapter III will continue in an intersessional life-saving appliances correspondence group.

Onboard Lifting Appliances and Anchor Handling Winches Working Group

The Working Group on Onboard Lifting Appliances and Anchor Handling Winches made good progress in the further development of the draft goals and functional requirements. The Sub-Committee re-established an intercessional Correspondence Group with terms of reference to refine the functional requirements and Draft Guidelines. There are two significant issues for which the Sub-Committee is seeking clarification from the Main Committee: 1) the most appropriate chapter in SOLAS for requirements for Onboard Lifting Appliances and Anchor Handling Winches; and 2) the specific applicability of any requirements based on safe working load rating of the equipment.

Onshore Power Supply Drafting Group

The Drafting Group on Safe Operation of On-Shore Power Supply drafted the terms of reference for a correspondence group for consideration by the Sub-Committee. The Sub-Committee established an intercessional Correspondence Group with the primary goal of developing Draft Guidelines for the Safe Operation of On-Shore Power Supply.

A full summary of the 5th Session of SSE can be found on the IMO’s website. The 6th session of the SSE is scheduled for March 4-8, 2019.

This blog is not a replacement or substitute for the formal posting of regulations and updates or existing processes for receiving formal feedback of the same. Links provided on this blog will direct the reader to official source documents, such as the Federal Register, Homeport and the Code of Federal Regulations. These documents remain the official source for regulatory information published by the Coast Guard.

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