Alert on detainable deficiencies

29 August 2019 |  C19034

Following a recent Port State Control (PSC) inspection, a number of deficiencies have been imposed that resulted in the detention of the vessel.  Dromon wishes to draw attention to those detainable deficiencies to avoid re-occurrence.

Ship Owners/ Managers/ Operators | Surveyors / Auditors


During the PSC inspection, the fire hose on main deck starboard side was blocked by loose items and the transportable fire pump was not ready for use and could not start within reasonable time.

As per SOLAS, Ch. II-2, Reg. 14, the fire-fighting systems and appliances shall be kept in good working order and readily available for immediate use.

For the fire hoses and fire pumps, as per MSC.1/Circ.1432, below maintenance programme should be followed:

  1. Monthly inspections:
  2. verify all fire hydrants, hose and nozzles are in place, properly arranged, and are in serviceable condition;
  3. operate all fire pumps to confirm that they continue to supply adequate pressure; and
  4. emergency fire pump fuel supply adequate, and heating system in satisfactory condition, if applicable.
  5. Quarterly inspections:
  6. Verify international shore connection(s) is in serviceable condition.
  7. Annual inspections:
  8. visually inspect all accessible components for proper condition;
  9. flow test all fire pumps for proper pressure and capacity. Test emergency fire pump with isolation valves closed;
  10. test all hydrant valves for proper operation;
  11. pressure test a sample of fire hoses at the maximum fire main pressure, so that all fire hoses are tested within five years;
  12. verify all fire pump relief valves, if provided, are properly set;
  13. examine all filters/strainers to verify they are free of debris and contamination; and
  14. nozzle size/type correct, maintained and working.


Throughout the PSC Inspection, it was noted that the rescue boat was not ready for use, was not marked with the ship’s name and was poorly maintained.

As per SOLAS, Ch. III, Reg. 20, before the ship leaves port and at all times during the voyage, all life-saving appliances shall be in working order and ready for immediate use.

Below maintenance programme should be followed:

  1. Weekly inspection:

The following tests and inspections shall be carried out weekly and a report of the inspection shall be entered in the log-book:

a. all survival craft, rescue boats and launching appliances shall be visually inspected to ensure that they are ready for use. The inspection shall include, but is not limited to, the condition of hooks, their attachment to the lifeboat and the on-load release gear being properly and completely reset;

b. all engines in lifeboats and rescue boats shall be run for a total period of not less than 3 min, provided the ambient temperature is above the minimum temperature required for starting and running the engine. During this period of time, it should be demonstrated that the gear box and gear box train are engaging satisfactorily. If the special characteristics of an outboard motor fitted to a rescue boat would not allow it to be run other than with its propeller submerged for a period of 3 min, a suitable water supply may be provided. In special cases, the Flag Administration may waive this requirement for ships constructed before 1 July 1986;

2. Maintenance, thorough examination, operational testing, overhaul and repair of lifeboats, rescue boats and fast rescue boats, launching appliances and release gear.

a. Launching appliances shall be:

  • subject to a thorough examination at the annual surveys required by regulations I/7 or I/8, as applicable; and
  • upon completion of the examination, subjected to a dynamic test of the winch brake at maximum lowering speed. The load to be applied shall be the mass of the survival craft or rescue boat without persons on board, except that, at intervals of at least once every five years, the test shall be carried out with a proof load equal to 1.1 times the weight of the survival craft or rescue boat and its full complement of persons and equipment.

b. Lifeboat and rescue boat release gear, including fast rescue boat release gear and free-fall lifeboat release systems, shall be:

  • subject to a thorough examination and operational test during the annual surveys required by regulations I/7 and I/8;
  • in case of on-load release gear, operationally tested under a load of 1.1 times the total mass of the boat when loaded with its full complement of persons and equipment whenever the release gear is overhauled. Such overhauling and operational test shall be carried out at least once every five years; and
  • the operational testing of free-fall lifeboat release systems shall be performed either by free fall launch with only the operating crew on board or by a test without launching the lifeboat carried out based on Requirements for maintenance, thorough examination, operational testing, overhaul and repair.

3. Lifeboats and rescue boats, including fast rescue boats, shall be subject to a thorough examination and operational test during the annual surveys required by regulations I/7 and I/8.

4. The thorough examination, operational testing and overhaul required by above paragraphs and the maintenance and repair of equipment specified in paragraphs 11.1 to 11.4 shall be carried out in accordance with the Requirements for maintenance, thorough examination, operational testing, overhaul and repair, and the instructions for onboard maintenance as required by Reg. 36.

Act now

Surveyors must take note on the above detainable deficiencies and give special attention during forthcoming class and statutory surveys, irrespective of scope.

Shipowners / Managers / Operators are kindly requested to pay special attention into these deficiencies, note the regulation’s requirements and to inform Masters on taking corrective actions, if necessary.

The crew should be reminded on the testing and maintenance of the fire detection and fire alarm system requirements. Dromon Publication on onboard maintenance and drills agenda, should be followed enabling the crew to comply with the regulations.

Testing, maintenance and inspections shall be done on a regular basis, as directed by DBS and in a manner that ensures the reliability of fire-fighting systems and appliances. The maintenance plan shall always be available on the ship for inspection.

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