China urges IMO to improve pilot ladder safety regulations

Herman Broers

China has urged the IMO Sub Committee on Navigation, Communications and Search and Rescue (NSCR) to consider the following issues relating to pilot transfer arrangements (PTA’s):

China acknowledges that trapdoor incidents have been expienced in their national waters. Furthermore, China identified the following issues regarding pilot ladder safety:

  • IMPA reported a 14,3% percentage of non compliant pilots ladders .
  • Unsafe and improper us of pilot ladders are a major contributing factor to non compliances of pilot transfer arrangements.
  • Maintenance and inspection requirements of pilot transfer arrangements to be included in Solas V/23
  • Training in the use of pilot ladders to be strengthened en best practices or guidance to be developed
  • Concentrated Inspection Campaign on PTA’s to be carried out worldwide
  • Information exchange between PSC and pilotage authorities to be strengthened
  • PTA’s using a trapdoor arrangement should be improved so that the ladder extends above the railing of the trapdoor arrangement.
  • A sketch of the PTA – trapdoor arrangement should be included in the PTA wheelhouse poster.
  • The size of the aperture to be reconsidered to make it appropriate for pilots on all circumstances.
  • An upper limit for side ropes and handholds is needed in IMO 1045
  • The supervision for the disembarkation for the pilot needs to be added to Solas V/23
  • The inconsistencies between IMO and ISO standards need to be clarified with a view to achieving harmonized and safe standards worldwide.

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Know your pilot ladder in less than eight minutes

Here is an excellent online tool to help you maintain and inspect your pilot ladder: