The Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Construction (SDC) held its fifth session at International Maritime Organization Headquarters in London, England, January 22 to 26, 2018, under the chair of Mr. Kevin Hunter from the United Kingdom. The Vice-Chair of the Sub-Committee, Ms. Turid Stemre from Norway also attended. Capt. Benjamin Hawkins led the U.S. delegation with Mr. Jaideep Sirkar as the alternate, both from the U.S. Coast Guard’s Office of Design & Engineering Standards. The remainder of the delegation consisted of additional Coast Guard members, U.S. Department of State members, and technical subject matter experts from the private sector.
The main issues of importance to the United States were:
1. The development of a mandatory code for carriage of more than 12 industrial personnel.
2. The development of amendments to the International Code on the Enhanced Programme of Inspections during Surveys of Bulk Carriers and Oil Tankers, 2001 (ESP Code).
3. The development of SOLAS amendments for safe mooring.
4. Issues related to damage stability of passenger ships.
5. The development of second-generation intact stability criteria.
The sub-committee established a working group to continue development of a draft Industrial Personnel Code and implementing associated SOLAS amendments prepared by the intersessional correspondence group. Mr. Charles Rawson of the Coast Guard, assisted by Lt. Cmdr. Joel Coito of the State Department, represented the U.S. in the working group. Notable changes decided at this session include application of the new SOLAS chapter to all ships carrying more than 12 industrial personnel and requiring administrations to determine the specific requirements for ships of less than 500 gross tonnage. The sub-committee re-established a correspondence group, coordinated by Norway, to continue progress on the agenda item, with the intention of completion by 2020.
Amendments to ESP Code
A working group established by the sub-committee completed amendments to the ESP Code. The sub-committee endorsed the amendments and forwarded them to the Maritime Safety Committee, which will consider them for approval at its 99th session in May 2018 (MSC 99). Lt. Laura Fitzpatrick of the Coast Guard represented the U.S. in the working group, together with technical advisor Mr. Thomas Gruber of ABS.
The sub-committee agreed, in principle, on draft amendments to SOLAS regulation II-1/3-8 (“Towing and Mooring Equipment”), with a view toward submission to MSC 101 for approval. Mr. Jaideep Sirkar represented the U.S. in the working group, which continued development and revision of three sets of guidelines associated with these SOLAS amendments. The sub-committee re-established a correspondence group, coordinated by Japan, with a target completion date of 2019.
Computerized Stability Support for the Master in case of flooding for existing passenger ships
The sub-committee finalized the “Guidelines on operational information for masters in case of flooding for passenger ships constructed before 1 January 2014” and forwarded them to MSC 99 for approval as a new MSC Circular, in conjunction with the committee’s adoption of amendments to SOLAS regulations II-1/1 and II-1/8-1.3 regarding computerized stability support for existing passenger ships. In addition, the sub-committee agreed that existing passenger ships should comply with these amendments not later than the first renewal survey after five years after its date of entry into force (i.e., not later than the first renewal survey after January 1, 2025). Mr. James Person of the Coast Guard represented the U.S. as the chair of the correspondence group. The completion of these guidelines and amendments is due in large part to the outstanding leadership of Mr. Person.
Second Generation Intact Stability Criteria
The sub-committee took up this item without establishing a working group and agreed to re-establish the correspondence group on intact stability under the coordination of Japan. Further, the sub-committee agreed with the Chair’s proposal to request the MSC to authorize SDC 6 to establish an Experts group during SDC 6 and to request the MSC to extend the completion date from 2019 to 2020 (SDC 7).
Next session of SDC
The next session of the SDC sub-committee (SDC 6) is scheduled for February 4 to 8, 2019.
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