Guidance on the validity of radiocommunications equipment installed and used on board ships

11 October 2016  |  C16030

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) through MSC.1/Circ.1460 issued a guidance on the validity of radiocommunications equipment installed and used on board ships.

NOTICE TO
Ship Owners / Managers / Operators  | Surveyors

The Maritime Safety Committee, at its 92nd session, having recognized concerns that incompatibility may exist between radiocommunication equipment installed on ships, and the revised frequencies and channelling arrangements for the maritime HF and VHF bands as contained in appendices 17 and 18 to the Radio Regulations – Edition 2012, approved new guidance on the validity of radiocommunications equipment installed and used on ships.

The World Radiocommunication Conference 2012 made extensive changes to appendices 17 and 18 of the Radio Regulations. Whilst these changes do not affect the GMDSS, they do affect the use of other frequencies that would be used by services such as Port Operations and VTS.

The RR provisions apply as from the dates of application indicated in article 59 and resolution 98 of the Radio Regulations. Timely action is required by ships to ensure that radiocommunication equipment complies with the Radio Regulations. Replacement of operating hardware may be necessary to meet the changed requirements.

According to the Performance standards for shipborne VHF radio installations capable of communication and digital selective calling (resolution A.803(19)), the equipment should comply with the Radio Regulations.

Attention is drawn to MSC.1/Circ.1389, which contains guidance on procedures for updating shipborne navigation and communication equipment, and that updates to application software and firmware to meet changes in IMO and ITU regulatory requirements were needed.

act now

Ship Owners / Managers / Operators must update the HF radiocommunication equipment capable of operating narrow-band direct printing (NBDP) so that following the first radio survey after 1 January 2017 it meets the channelling arrangements reflected in sections II and III of part B in appendix 17 of the Radio Regulations. Radiocommunication equipment, other than HF radiocommunication equipment capable of operating NBDP, does not necessarily need to be updated by the first radio survey after 1 January 2017, but may be updated appropriately in accordance with the decision of the Flag State.

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