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Port state to focus on stability issues

Updated 17 August 2021

Originally scheduled for 2020 but postponed due to COVID-19, this year’s joint inspection campaign by the Paris and Tokyo MoUs starts on 1 September 2021 and focuses on stability in general.

Ships and their equipment should always be maintained in such a way as to ensure safe operations and smooth Port State Control (PSC) inspections. However, targeted PSC inspections announced in advance, like the yearly Concentrated Inspection Campaigns (CIC), serve as timely reminders for companies and seafarers to focus on specific areas where a higher risk of accidents and/or non-compliance with international safety regulations could exist.

This year’s joint CIC by the Tokyo and Paris MoUs on stability in general has reportedly been prompted by several serious incidents including incorrect ship loading conditions and missing intact stability documentation onboard. The CIC will run from 1 September to 30 November 2021 and, at the time of writing, it has been announced that the Black Sea, Indian Ocean, Mediterranean, Riyadh and Viña del Mar MOUs will also participate in the campaign.

Like previous years, the CIC will be included as an additional part of routine PSC inspections during the campaign period and attending PSC Officers (PSCOs) will use a questionnaire tailored to verify specific topics and areas relevant to the CIC. 

The questionnaire contains eight check points and aims not only to verify that a ship complies with the stability requirements under the relevant IMO instruments, but also to confirm that a ship’s crew are familiar with assessing the actual stability condition before departure, and to create awareness about the importance of calculating the actual stability condition. Hence, attending PSC Officers (PSCO) are likely to focus on:

  • ships’ stability documentation (stability booklet, loading manuals, etc.) and loading calculations (loading computer and software, loading documents, etc.)
  • responsible officers’ familiarization with the above, as well as
  • companies’ ability to respond to emergencies which require stability calculations, such as grounding, flooding, list due to shifting of cargo, etc.

We strongly encourage Members and clients to use this CIC as a reminder of the importance of ensuring readiness of the shore organization, crew and equipment in case of emergencies that may lead to loss of stability. Operators of car carriers should also take a look at our alert “Do not depart port without knowing the final cargo weight distribution” of 3 June 2021.

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