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AMSA Consultation – Mandatory Float-Free EPIRBs

UPDATE 18/12/17 – Extension of consultation period on float-free EPIRB changes

AMSA have extended the consultation period for a further six weeks until Friday 2 February 2018 on the proposal to mandate the use of float-free emergency position indicating radio beacons (EPIRBs).The extension gives affected domestic commercial vessel operators more time to consider the proposed changes and provide feedback.

AMSA have updated the explanatory note to:

  • adjust the commencement date of the proposed changes to 1 April 2018
  • extend the proposed changes to Class 4C vessels based on feedback received and include the estimated costs for those operators
  • give further information about float-free EPIRBs and limitations of manual-only EPIRBs
  • clarify that life rafts required to carry an EPIRB under NSCV Part C7A will only need to carry a manually-activated EPIRB.

The changes relate to requirements under the National Standard for Commercial Vessels (Part C7B, Part G, and Part F2).

Read the supporting material and have your say on AMSA’s consultation page, see consultation titled NSCV C7B Design and Construction—Equipment—Communications Equipment.

Comments are welcome by Friday 2 February 2018.

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The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has opened public consultation on proposed changes to the National Standard for Commercial Vessel (NSCV) and other instruments to mandate the carriage of float-free emergency position-indication radio beacons (EPRIBs) on certain kinds of domestic commercial vessels (DCVs).

Who needs to know about these proposed changes?
Stakeholders who own or operate a Class 1, 2 or 3 fishing vessels that:

  • Operate beyond 2 nautical miles from coast.
  • Are required to have a certificate of survey;
  • Are exempt from the requirement to have a certificate of survey; and,
  • Are existing (‘grandfathered’) vessels.

When are proposed changes planned to apply?
From 1st January 2019

What are the key changes?
All fishing vessels (Class 1, 2 and 3) will be required to carry an EPIRB designed to automatically activate and float-free.

Changes will apply to a vessel that:

  • operates beyond 2 nautical miles seaward from the coast;
  • is equal to or greater than 12 metres in length;
  • is less than 12 metres in length but does not have level flotation.

Note: Vessels less than 12 metres but have level flotation can continue to carry the kind of EPIRB currently required.

To assist industry review of the proposed changes AMSA has prepared the following information:

  • explanatory information summarising the proposed changes;
  • a draft amending instrument for NSCV Part C7B and NSCV Part G; and
  • an estimate of costs that would be incurred by business in complying with the proposed changes.

These consultation documents and supporting material (ID: MO-NSCV C7B) can be viewed at or by clicking here.

Have your say
AMSA is seeking industry feedback sent to by Friday 2nd January 2018.

Posted in Industry Consultations