Skip to main content

Illustrate the provision kept towards establishing procedures for identification and testing of "critical" equipment under ISM Code. How the list of critical equipment and systems are made and on what factors are they dependent?

1. A new chapter management for the safe operation of ships was added to SOLAS and the amendments introducing the new chapter IX entered into force on 1st July 1998. The chapter made mandatory the International Safety Management Code which established the following objectives:
  • to provide for safe practices in ship operation and a safe working environment
  • to establish safeguards against all identified risks
  • to continuously improve safety management skills of personnel, including preparing for emergencies

2. Critical equipment/system is that, the sudden failure of which may result in a hazardous situation. These are the equipments, whose failure can cause an accident or result in a hazardous situation, thereby causing injury to personnel or loss of life or damage to the marine environment or property.

3. As per, Element 10.3 of the ISM code, It is the responsibility of the company to establish procedures in the Safety Management System to identity such systems and/or equipments. The company should establish procedures in its safety management system to identify equipment and technical system, the sudden operational failure of which may result in hazardous situation. The SMS should provide for specific measures aimed at promoting the reliability
of such equipment or systems. These measures should include the regular testing of standby arrangements or equipment or technical systems that are not in continuous use. The Safety Management System must, with respect to critical technical system/equipments:
  • Have procedures to identify them
  • Have procedures to ensure their tests and functional reliability
  • Have procedures to establish and use alternative arrangements on sudden failure
  • Have procedures to test stand by equipment
  • Have procedure to ensure that single failure does not cause of Critical‘ ship functions‘ that could lead to an accident
  • Have procedures to ensure that system/equipment inactive for some time is tested regularly and prior to conducting critical operations.

4. As per Element 7‘ of the ISM Code, ‘ the company must establish procedures for the preparation of plans and instructions including checklists if any for key shipboard operations related to the safety of the ship and the prevention of pollution.

5. It is recognized that all equipments are important for the proper operation of the vessel. If most of the equipments on board the ship are considered as critical, the usefulness of the actual critical equipments becomes limited.

6. The risk assessment and root cause analysis of various past accidents, near-miss/ hazardous occurrence methods have been adopted for identifying the critical equipment and the list made to meet ISM Code criteria and limited to safety and environmental protection.

7. Hence, in combination with Element 10‘ the following shipboard
operations/items are subjected to inspection and test:
  • Securing watertight integrity
  • Navigation safety, including corrections to charts and publications
  • Oil transfer operations
  • Maintenance operations related to
  • Hull and superstructure steelwork
  • Safety, fire-fighting, life-saving equipment
  • Navigation equipment
  • Steering gear
  • Anchoring and mooring gear
  • Main engine and auxiliary engine
  • Pipelines and values
  • Cargo handling equipment
  • I.G. System
  • Electrical installations
  • Fire detection and alarm system
  • Bunkering operations
  • Navigation in restricted visibility/high-density traffic area
  • Operation in heavy weather
  • Critical machinery system

8. SHIPBOARD OPERATIONS can be categorized into:
(a) Normal Operations: Error becomes apparent, only after occurrence of a hazardous situation
(b) Critical Operations: Error directly leads to accident.
Critical Operations would include (but not limited to)
  • Navigation in restricted visibility
  • Navigation in high density traffic area
  • Navigation in restricted/narrow area
  • Heavy weather operations
  • Handling of hazardous cargo and noxious substances
  • Bunkering and oil transfer operation at sea
  • Cargo operations on Gas/Oil/Chemical tankers


  1. This is really a good source of information, I will often follow it to know more information and expand my knowledge, I think everyone should know it, thanks Best Marine hvac in dubai service provider.

  2. Impressive and powerful suggestion by the author of this blog are really helpful to me.

    puerto vallarta boat charter


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Load Line & Why it is Important

Merchant ships have a marking on their hull know as the Plimsoll line or the Plimsoll mark, which indicates the limit until which ships can be loaded with enough cargo, internationally, the Plimsoll line on a ship is officially referred to as the international load line. Every type of ship has a different level of floating and the Plimsoll line on a ship generally varies from one vessel to another.  All vessels of 24 meters and more are required to have this Load line marking at the centre position of the length of summer load water line. There are two types of Load line markings:- Standard Load Line marking – This is applicable to all types of vessels. Timber Load Line Markings – This is applicable to vessels carrying timber cargo. These marks shall be punched on the surface of the hull making it visible even if the ship side paint fades out. The marks shall again be painted with white or yellow colour on a dark background/black on a light background.  The comp

Difference Between A, B & C-Class Divisions?

IMO Symbol A Class Division  IMO Symbol B Class Division  SOLAS has tables for structural fire protection requirement of bulkheads and decks. The requirements depend on the spaces in question and are different for passenger ships and cargo ships. The Administration has required a test of a prototype bulkhead or deck in accordance with the Fire Test Procedures Code to ensure that it meets the above requirements for integrity and temperature rise. Types of Divisions: "A" Class "B" Class "C" Class "A" Class: "A" class divisions are those divisions formed by bulkheads and decks which comply with the following criteria: They are constructed of steel or equivalent material They are suitably stiffened They are constructed as to be capable of preventing the passage of smoke and flame to the end of the one-hour standard fire test. they are insulated with approved non-combustible materials such that the average tempera

Gravity Disc

Oils containing water can only be de-watered in a perfect manner if the bowl is accurately adjusted to the difference in densities of oil and water. The gravity disc with proper inner diameter i.e. with the diameter that corresponds to the difference in densities of the oil-water mixture to be treated should, therefore, be inserted in the bowl, This disc can be chosen from the set of disc provided with the separator. The inner diameter of the disc to be chosen can be determined by:  Calculation   Experiment The general rule is : Small diameter gravity disc when treating heavy oil Large diameter regulating ring when treating light oil Determining the size of gravity disc by calculation: For a given separating temperature, the inner diameter of the gravity disc and if the desired density of the oil can be determined from the diagram, provided that the density of the oil at a temperature ranging 15℃ and 90℃ is known. For example; Given: Density of oil at 20℃            ρ oil