Australia: AMSA Marine Notice relating to ECDIS

Australia - Sydney

The Club would like to draw Members’ attention to the below update from the Club’s Correspondents in Australia.

A copy of Marine Notice 082021, last updated on 29.11.2021, is available here


The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (“AMSA”) has recently issued a new Marine Notice relating to Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems.
In relation to Port State Control (“PSC”) inspections AMSA has said that Masters and officers in charge of a navigational watch must be able to demonstrate competency and functionality of the ECDIS and particularly critical functions essential for safe navigation including, but not limited to:
A. Entering safety settings (i.e. safety depths and contours) appropriate to the ship and its intended voyage;
B. Setting and response to ECDIS alarms, such as those for crossing safety contours, deviation from route, positioning system failure and approach to critical points; 
C. Entering and route checking voyage plans;
D. Updating electronic navigational charts (“ENCs”); and
E. Alternate methods of position fixing.
AMSA has advised that PSC offices may take action when there are clear grounds to believe that the Master or officers in charge of a navigational watch are not familiar with essential shipboard procedures relating to the operation of ECDIS. They may also take action to ensure that the ship does not leave port until the situation is resolved within the requirements of the relevant Convention.
AMSA have also said that for an ENC to be considered adequate for navigational purposes it must be issued officially by or on the authority of a national hydrographic office, must be kept up-to-date using the latest available official Notice to Mariners and must be of appropriate scale and suitable for the navigational task at hand,


Jacqueline Tan

Legal Services Manager