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AMSA Marine Notice 14/2022 - Navigational visibility from bridge

SSM Roundel

Steamship Mutual

Published: November 24, 2022

Visibility and blind sector dangers

AMSA have recently drafted a notice that stresses the need of preserving the unrestricted field of visibility available to watchkeeping officers on all vessels.  Its contents should be recognized by vessel operators, masters, navigational officers and designers / naval architects. The issue should also be recognised internationally, as it will impact navigational safety not only in Australia, but around the world.

Specific standards for preserving watchkeeping visibility from the bridge are described in SOLAS Chapter V Regulation 22. Bridge visibility that does not satisfy SOLAS regulations prevents vessels from being navigated safely, and bridge watchkeeping and the ability to keep a proper lookout will suffer as a result.

The standards enable detection and effective monitoring of traffic, vessels or people in distress, assessing a situation and any subsequent risk of collision, and avoiding collision and stranding.

To guarantee adequate navigation bridge visibility, SOLAS stipulates (in part) that on any vessel longer than 55m in length:

  • there are no blind sectors caused by cargo or other obstructions forward of the beam that exceed 10 degrees.
  • Under all draught, trim, and deck cargo conditions, the view of the sea surface shall not be obscured by the lesser of two ship lengths or 500m.        

For the full notice, please click on the link below.

Marine notice 14/2022—Ensuring navigation bridge visibility

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