The International Marine Organisation (IMO) Sub-Committee on Ship Systems and Equipment (SSE 9), occurring from 27th February to 3rd of March, 2023, completed its review of SOLAS chapter II-2 and associated codes, including the Fire Safety Systems (FSS) Code, to minimize the incidence and consequences of fires on board ro-ro passenger ships.
he draft amendments agreed by the Sub-Committee will be forwarded to MSC 107, for approval and subsequent adoption. The draft SOLAS amendments will mainly apply to passenger ships constructed on or after 1 January 2026 and include requirements for:
- a fixed fire detection and fire alarm system to be provided for the area on the weather deck intended for the carriage of vehicles;
- an effective video monitoring system shall be arranged in vehicle, special category and ro-ro spaces for continuous monitoring of these spaces;
- structural fire protection in passenger ships carrying more than 36 passengers, including fire insulation of boundary bulkheads and decks of special category and ro-ro spaces; and
- a fixed water-based fire-extinguishing system based on monitor(s) to be installed in order to cover weather decks intended for the carriage of vehicles.
The draft amendments to the FSS Code include specifications of fixed water-based fire-extinguishing on ro-ro passenger ships having weather decks intended for the carriage of vehicles as required by SOLAS chapter II-2.
Draft amendments to the Revised Guidelines for the design and approval of fixed water-based fire-fighting systems for ro-ro spaces and special category spaces (MSC.1/Circ.1430/Rev.2) were also agreed.
Fire protection of control stations and cargo control rooms on cargo ships
The Sub-Committee also finalized draft amendments to regulation 7 of SOLAS chapter II-2 (Detection and alarm) and associated MSC.1/Circ.1456, addressing fire protection of control stations and cargo control rooms on cargo ships to enhance fire safety in such locations.