17 March 2010
A change to Maritime Rule 42B is expected to reduce compliance costs by giving owners and masters greater responsibility for safety on board their vessels.
The rule change allows owner/operators of vessels or Safe Ship Management Surveyors to inspect fire extinguishers as part of regular scheduled maintenance checks. This will reduce costs by removing the need for more regular checks by competent persons.
Vessel owners and operators will be expected to undertake monthly visual inspections of fire extinguishers, as outlined in their vessel’s maintenance plan. Maritime New Zealand inspectors and auditors will check that this is occurring.
Persons certified as competent will still be required to carry out the more technical tasks of testing and maintaining the fire extinguishers at least every five years.
In keeping with the philosophy of Safe Ship Management, the responsibility for safety lies with the owners and operators of vessels. At the same time, Maritime New Zealand aims to reduce the burden of compliance costs on owners and operators in situations where it is assured that safety will not be compromised.
An updated Advisory Circular for Rule 42B will specify what operators and surveyors need to look for in their inspections of fire extinguishers.
This rule change will be gazetted and in force from 1 April 2010.
For further information contact:
Maritime New Zealand Media Line
Phone 04 499 7318