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Thursday, 27 November 2014

IMO approves container weight regulation and Polar Code

The International Martitime Organisation (IMO) has announced plans to adopt new Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) regulations by 1 July 2016 along with a new Polar Code to govern the operation of ships passing through Arctic or Antarctic waters.

The SOLAS amendments include new rules for weighing containers and for inspection of bulk carriers and oil tankers. The ammendment states that authorities will “require mandatory verification of the gross mass of containers, either by weighing the packed container; or weighing all packages and cargo items, using a certified method approved by the competent authority of the State in which packing of the container was completed.”

The IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) approved the amendments during its 94th session committee meeting in London where adoption of the Polar Code was also agreed.

The Polar Code is intended to cover the full range of shipping-related matters relevant to navigation in waters surrounding the two poles – ship design, construction and equipment; operational and training concerns; search and rescue; and, equally important, the protection of the unique environment and eco-systems of the polar regions.

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