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International Safety Management

(I.S.M. Code) (M.G.N.40)

Management Starts at the top then goes to the bottom of the scale

(Climb the ladder to success)

The Company

Chief Executive


Assistant Managers

Designated Person (D.P.)

The Ship


1st Mate

2nd Mate

Chief Engineer

2nd Engineer

Safety Officer


(Safety Officer can over-ride the Captain to let the D.P. ashore know about any defects/dangers on the ship)

(Questions and Answers)

(Q) Who Issues it?

(a) M.C.A. through the Sectary of State

(Q) What is the purpose of the I.S.M. Code?

(a) To Minimise accidents and pollution

(Q) When was the I.S.M. Code made mandatory?

(a) Every Merchant Navy vessel over 500grt since 1994 and every vessel since 2002

(Q) Who is responsible for the safety of the crew?

(a) The skipper/Captain

(Q) Who is responsible for the running costs and repairs to the ship?

(a) The Owners

(Q) Who's signature goes on the health and safety policy on the ship?

(a) The Chief Executive of the company

(Q) What is the main cause of accidents/pollution on a ship?

(a) Human Error

(Q) Why is so important to have muster drills and debriefs on a ship?

(a) To Minimise accidents and prepare for emergencies on a ship

(Q) What pre-cautions while bunkering a ship (re-fueling a ship)?


(i) Double up mooring ropes

(ii) Have someone man ready to shut off the fuel stop at the fueling rig

(iii) Have someone ready to shut off the fuel stop on the ship

(iv) Have fire extinguishers handy

(v) Have an oil dispersant ready

(vi) Block freeing ports incase of spillage

(vii) Use Save-alls

(viii) Have no smoking signs (placards) posted

(ix) Make sure no hot work to be carried out

(x) No Naked flames

(xi) Make sure you have adequate ventilation

(xii) Make sure you know the amount of fuel you need and slow it down the last 100 litres

(Q) What are your responsibilities if you have a fuel spill?

(a) To alert the Coastguard and then follow the procedures in the S.O.P.E.P. manual

(Q) The Coastguard is responsible for oil pollution monitoring, what would happen if you had a fuel spill?

(a) In the S.O.P.E.P. manual you would have a list of authorities you are required to report too

(Q) What is a D.P. and who regards this person as important?

(a) A Designated Person and the M.C.A. regards information from him with the highest esteem

(Q) A D.P. what level of management can he approach?

(a) Straight to the top (Chief Executive)

(Q) What does a company receive when it achieves a successful audit?

(a) A D.O.C. (Document of Compliance)

(Q) What documents are required to get a D.O.C.?

(a) An S.M.S. (Safety and Management System)

(Q) How long does a D.O.C. last for?

(a) 5 years plus/minus 3 months (it also has an annual inspection)

(Q) How long does a S.M.S. last for?

(a) 5 years with an inspection every 2-3 years to keep it valid

(Q) What are the bare-bones of a S.M.S.?

(a) The Code of Safe Working Practice

(Q) What are the bare-bones of the I.S.M. code?

(a) The safety and management system (S.M.S.)

(Q) What ships does the I.S.M. apply to?

(a) From 2002 all ships over 500grt

(Q) If under 500grt do they have to use the I.S.M. code?

(a) No, they use it voluntary, but the M.C.A want everyone to use it

(Q) What is the corner stone of good safety management?

(a) Commitment from the head of the company (Chief Executive)

(Q) Who should define and document the responsibility in authority of shipboard personnel?

(a) The Company

(Q) What document will the company supply to all their ships under its management?

(a) The Safety and Management manual (Health & Safety Policy)

(Q) How do you report any accident(s) and non-conformities?

(a) By reporting to the skipper/safety officer, to the D.P. ashore or by V.H.F. to the M.C.A. /M.A.I.B. on an I.R.F. as well as to the company

(Q) Who is responsible for verifying compliance with the I.S.M. code ashore and afloat?

(a) M.C.A.

(Q) What size of ships should voluntarily use the I.S.M. code?

(a) Ships between 150grt and 500grt

(Q) What two statutory instruments do you require for an application for an I.S.M. code?

(a) D.O.C. & S.M.C. (Document of Compliance & Safety Management Certificate)

(Q) When will a D.O.C. be issued?

(a) When a company demonstrates plans to implement a S.M.S. meeting the full requirements of the code

(Q) What will be issued to each ship after a successful onboard audit of the S.M.S.?

(a) An S.M.C.

(Q) What is the "Company"?

(a) Anyone who has assumed the responsibility of the operation of the ship and taken the responsibility from the ship owner

(Q) What should be the safety management objectives of the company?


(i) Provide safe ship operations and safe working practice
(ii) Do a risk assessment on the vessel
(iii) Keep improving safety standards and skills of personnel onboard and onshore (Musters and drills)

(Q) What should the safety management system ensure?

(a) Its should ensure compliance with rules/regs and all codes/guidelines and standards recommended by I.M.O. /M.C.A. and classification societies

(Q) What should a company do to implement/maintain and develop an S.M.S.?


(i) A safety and environmental policy
(ii) Instruction on procedures for safe operation of ships and protection of the environment
(iii) Defined levels of authority and lines of communication between shore/ship personnel
(iv) Reporting procedures for accidents and defects of the ship
(v) Musters and drills
(vi) Internal audits

(Q) What is the master's responsibility?


(i) Carrying out the safety and pollution control policy of the company
(ii) The master has the authority to take any steps and issue any orders for the preservation of live and safety of the ship

(Q) What should provide the required training in support of the S.M.S.?

(a) The Company

(Q) Who is responsible for correcting defects on a ship?

(a) The company

(Q) What action is taken to review the companies/ships S.M.S.?

(a) Internal audits

(Q) Where are the D.O.C. / S.M.C. kept at?

(a) Its kept onboard the vessel

(Q) Does the M.C.A. have power to impound a ship if it has defects or does not have a D.O.C.?

(a) Yes the ship can be impounded for both

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