New rules on pilot transfers and lifeboat drills
Maritime NZ has completed work on rules to improve safety and international consistency for pilot ladders and lifeboats on vessels.
The rule amendments to both Part 53 and 23 have now been gazetted, after Maritime NZ considered feedback from consultation with maritime pilots and the shipping industry.
The amendments are to Part 53 Pilot Transfer Arrangements and Ship - Helicopter Pilot Transfers, and Part 23 Operating Procedures and Training, which covers training around the use of lifeboats.
The amendments rules revoke Rule 53.4(2)(a). This change will provide greater certainty for pilots, ports and stakeholders about potential prosecutions from not complying with Rule 53.4(2)(a). Other Part 53 amendments relate to the approval of equivalent pilot transfer arrangements, accommodation ladder requirements, and the thickness of side ropes on pilot ladders.
The changes to Part 23 clarify that crew are not required to be aboard lifeboats when they are lowered during drills.
This removes a health and safety risk for crew.
The new rules come into force on December 22, 2022.