Guidance on the Validity of Radiocommunications Equipment Installed and Used on Ships

18 March 2022 |  C22019

Following Dromon Circular C17012 and since IMO has revised MSC.1/Circ.1460, this circular contains updates on the validity of the radiocommunication equipment.

Ship Owners/ Managers/ Operators | Surveyors/Auditors

The Maritime Safety Committee, at its 104th session, released an update on the Guidance on the validity of radio communication equipment installed and used on ships considering the recommendation of the Sub-Committee on Navigation, Communications, as per MSC.1/Circ.1460/Rev.3.

The Circular replaces MSC.1/Circ.1460/Rev.2, which addressed both MF/HF radiocommunication equipment that is capable of operating narrow band direct-printing (NBDP) and VHF radiocommunication equipment. Since NBDP radiocommunication equipment will no longer be required under forthcoming amendments to SOLAS chapter IV, that equipment is not addressed in the updated Circular.

The ITU World Radiocommunication Conferences in 2012, 2015 and 2019 made extensive changes to appendix 18 of the RR. While these changes do not affect the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS), they do affect the use of other frequencies used for VHF meteorological, navigational and urgent marine information broadcasts, port operations and Vessel Traffic Service (VTS).

According to the Performance standards for shipborne VHF radio installations capable of communication and digital selective calling (IMO Resolution A.803(19), as amended), VHF radiocommunication equipment should comply with the RR.

The Guidance on procedures for updating shipborne navigation and communication equipment (MSC.1/Circ.1389) notes that updates to application software and firmware to meet changes in IMO and ITU regulatory requirements are needed.

To ensure GMDSS communication capability and the availability of appropriate GMDSS radiocommunication equipment, and without prejudice to the arrangements contained in appendix 18 of the RR, VHF radiocommunication equipment should be updated so that following the first radio survey after 1 January 2024, at the earliest, it meets the arrangements which will be in force by then.

Act now

Ship Owners / Managers / Operators should take into consideration the above guidelines on the validity of radiocommunications equipment and ensure compliance prior its entry into force on the first radio survey after 01st of January 2024.

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