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Loss Prevention Circular No

Loss Prevention Circular  No. 04-03

Typhoon season precautions—Hong Kong area

 

Introduction

Owners, agents and charterers are requested to remind their ship masters of the need to take precautionary measures during the approach of tropical cyclones.  This circular provides information regarding the need to comply with the specified mooring regulations in Hong Kong and that proper considerations are made for proper moorings in locations where typhoon conditions apply.

 

Specifications

Masters, owners, agents and persons in control of vessels are also reminded of their obligation, under Sections 61 and 62 of the Shipping and Port Control Ordinance, Cap. 313 of the Laws of Hong Kong SAR, to comply with any direction of the Director of Marine concerning the safe operations of vessels and the port, or in relation to any matter which the Director may give directions under the Ordinance.

 

All Government Class "A" and "B" moorings are available for use during typhoons with the exception of:

·         "A" mooring— A17, A29, A35, A43, A46; and

·         "B" mooring: B1, B2, B3, B4.

 

The status of all Government Class "A" and "B" moorings is subject to change without notice. Up-to-date information can be obtained from the Vessel Traffic Centre, at telephone +85 2233 7808, telex 63607 MDVTS, or facsimile +85 2858 6646.

 

Recommendations

·         The master of a ship moored to a government mooring may, at his discretion, drop a bower anchor under foot to lessen the tendency to sheer. This should not impair the efficiency of the mooring, although an anchor should not be used during normal weather conditions.

 

·         Masters are reminded that every vessel within the waters of Hong Kong must maintain a continuous listening watch on the VHF radio channel appropriate to the VHF sector in which the vessel is located, or another VHF channel as may be specified by the Vessel Traffic Centre (call sign "Mardep") unless he is released from this obligation by the Centre. The Centre will broadcast tropical cyclone information from time to time when the tropical cyclone warning signals have been hoisted. Masters should listen to local radio broadcasts for advisory weather information bulletins.

 

·         Some vessels have been found not having adequate manning onboard during periods when tropical cyclone warning signals are hoisted. An inadequately manned vessel during the passage of a tropical cyclone is not only at greater risk but also endangers the port and other vessels. The attention of masters, owners, agents and charterers of vessels is therefore drawn to Regulation 26(1) of the Shipping and Port Control Regulations, which states that:

“A ship shall, while within the waters of Hong Kong, have onboard at all times such number of crew as is, in the opinion of the Director, qualified and capable of carrying out all duties which may reasonably be required to ensure the safety of the ship having regard to the circumstances pertaining thereto.”

 

·         Similar requirements may apply to ports other than Hong Kong in typhoon areas and that owners may be well advised to check for any additional requirements if their vessels call at such ports.