748 - 03/11 - Inadequate Provision of charts and publications - Australia

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) have noticed an increase in non compliance with ships passage plans and in particularly the proper application of SOLAS Chapter V in regard to the proper carriage and correction of nautical publications.

It has been found during Port State Control Inspections that some offending vessels do not have charts onboard or are using scanned/photocopied charts. When this occurs, it usually results in the vessel being detained.

SOLAS requires that all passage plans are completed prior to departure (i.e. well before Pilot embarkation) so that the Ships Master can effectively discharge their duties in accordance with the relevant national and international requirements.

Understanding of the nature of the industry and that a vessels destination can be changed with little notice to the vessel command however the international, port and flag state regulations must be adhered to at all times and that "Berth to Berth” passage plans based on and around relevant, applicable and  corrected charts and publications.  

In order to avoid delays if a ship presents itself for port pilotage and the relevant charts are not held and/or passage plans have not been completed, it is advisable that the company/Master/ ships agents may make arrangements to provide a vessel with the up to date charts so that the passage plan and port entry can be adequately prepared in advance of the pilot boarding.  

AMSA will ensure that non-compliance with these requirements will also be enforced as a Port State Control issue and the non carriage of up to date charts is both a SOLAS and ISM Deficiency/Detention for the vessel.

AMSA will also be inspecting a vessel's ECDIS, where electronic charts are the main means of navigation for that vessel.

Further information can be read in Marine Notice 16/2009 - Expected Actions of Bridge Teams in Australian Pilotage Waters available at:

Source of Information:   Loss Prevention

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