News 24 Jan, 2014

SOLAS - Non-Compliant Pilot Ladder Securing Arrangements

The United Kingdom Maritime Pilots’ Association (UKMPA) has recently issued a Safety Flyer concerning the use of a widespread, but unacceptable method of securing pilot ladders.

The UKMPA advises that following discussion between the International Maritime Pilots Association (IMPA) and the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS), it would appear that the use of steel hooks or tongues on deck under which pilot ladder steps are hooked as a means of securing a pilot ladder when in use, are not compliant with the requirements of SOLAS Chapter V, Regulation 23 (as amended).

The use of such hook arrangements imparts loads in steps for which they are not normally designed, and there is also the possibility of the pilot ladder becoming detached from the hook arrangement. Given the weight of the ladder and any person thereon, pilot ladders should be made fast via the side ropes to suitable strong points on the ship’s structure unless specifically designed to be secured in a different manner.

Full details can be found in the UKMPA Safety Flyer “Pilot Ladders – Non-Compliant Securing Arrangements”, including pictures of non-compliant pilot ladder securing arrangements.

Members requiring any further guidance should contact the Loss Prevention department.