Malta Transport Centre’s Merchant Shipping Directorate, has released Merchant Shipping Notice 180, as reminder on the the Australian Maritime Safety Authority’s (AMSA) Marine Notice 10/2022, to remind that AMSA shows an increased focus on planned maintenance during port State control inspections (PSC) in Australian ports.
AMSA will place greater focus on planned maintenance of propulsion and auxiliary equipment and associated systems and will take necessary compliance actions to address any identified areas of concern. This may include the physical attendance of classification society surveyors to verify the condition of critical equipment and its suitability to continue to function under all voyage conditions to maintain safe operations.
AMSA’s International Safety Management Code (ISM Code)
Maintenance of the ship and equipment is a requirement of the ISM Code, including that:
- Maintenance inspections are held at appropriate intervals
- Any non-conformity is reported, with its possible cause, if known
- Appropriate corrective action is taken
- Records of these activities are maintained.
In relation to maintenance, the ISM Code specifies that the vessel’s Safety Management System (SMS) should:
- Identify equipment and technical systems that would cause hazardous situations if they were to suddenly fail
- Provide for specific measures (i.e. regular testing of all equipment including stand-by equipment or systems that are not in continuous use) to ensure the continued reliability of such equipment or systems
Maintenance activities need to be properly resourced, and procedures must be documented.
This is not a Focused Inspection Campaign (FIC) or Concentrated Inspection Campaign (CIC) of limited duration, but it is an ongoing exercise. During regular maintenance, the crew needs to focus on verifying operational preparedness and compliance to international requirements.
Ship operators and masters of Maltese registered vessels must ensure that all areas of SMS maintenance procedures are being diligently covered and documented in preparation for any PSC inspection. This includes ensuring that;
- maintenance inspections are held at appropriate intervals;
- equipment is tested regularly;
- any non-conformity is reported;
- appropriate corrective action is taken; and
- records of these activities are maintained.