Commercial Vessel Compliance

10/10/2018: Coast Guard releases Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular 02-95, Change 3 – The Alternate Compliance Program

Today, the Coast Guard released Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular 02-95, Change 3 – “The Alternate Compliance Program (ACP).” This change incorporates various policies and related provisions consistent with the Commandant’s Final Action Memo (FAM) on the sinking of the S.S. El Faro.

Major changes include:

• Alignment of procedures and terminology with the International Code for Recognized Organizations (RO Code).

• Integrated ACP program management with the Coast Guard’s Mission Management System (MMS), which is an International Standards Organization (ISO) 9001 based Quality Management System in order to support key Coast Guard internal business processes, information flows, reporting and data analytics.

• Incorporated other procedures and instructions including the ACP Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTP) and various MMS documents (e.g., MMS Work Instructions), which focus on individual aspects of the ACP and facilitate more frequent programmatic updates.

• Accepted that transfers of vessel classification may be completed under the provisions of International Association of Classification Societies Procedural Requirement 1A.

• Provided details on the Coast Guard’s Fleet Risk Index for vessels enrolled in the ACP.

• Removed provision for involuntary disenrollment from the ACP.

It is the Coast Guard’s goal that this NVIC remain the foundational document of an enduring policy framework that promotes risk-based decision making, is simpler to execute, and enables more robust oversight of the ACP.

For more information, read or download NVIC 02-95, Change 3. Questions should be directed to

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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