Marine Safety Information Bulletin 21-20 , Oct 21 2020: Recommendation for Pilot Transfer Arrangements

Herman Broers


 Recent deaths of maritime pilots while embarking commercial vessels highlights the risks of operating in an unforgiving maritime environment. To ensure the safety of all personnel boarding a vessel at sea, the Coast Guard strongly recommends that owners and operators of vessels, regardless of vessel build date, follow the guidelines within IMO Resolution A.1045(27) – Pilot Transfer Arrangements

For vessels with equipment and arrangements installed1 on or after July 1, 2012, combination arrangements involving a trapdoor configuration are required to comply with Safety of Life At Sea (SOLAS) Chapter V, Regulation While the renewal of pilot transfer equipment (i.e., pilot ladder) on existing vessels does not require the reconfiguration of the trapdoor arrangement, the Coast Guard strongly recommends the upgrade of any trapdoor configuration arrangement to meet the guidelines of IMO Resolution A.1045(27). 

For vessels registered in the U.S., Coast Guard marine inspectors and classification society surveyors verify pilot transfer arrangements during initial construction. Any changes in the approved configuration should be brought to the attention of the local Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection (OCMI) or the classification society surveyor, if applicable, in order to verify that the pilot transfer arrangement is in compliance with SOLAS Chapter V, Regulation 23. 

Questions concerning this notice may be forwarded to Coast Guard Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance, Flag State Control Division (CG-CVC-4) at 

October 21st, 2020 USCG

Next Post

NZMPA issues clear guidelines on trapdoor pilot boarding arrangements

The New Zealand Maritime Pilot Association, at their conference in Dunedin, issued ” A GUIDE FOR PILOT BOARDING OPERATIONS IN NEW ZEALAND WHEN USING COMBINATION ARRANGEMENTS WITH A TRAPDOOR “. This document is a very clear guideline on how to rig a pilotladder trapdoor arrangement with all safety measures in place. […]