Various Problems Of Distress Vessel At The Place Of Refuge
Various Problems Of Distress Vessel At The Place Of Refuge
International Maritime Organisation (IMO) adopted two resolutions in November, 2003 on the issue of "Places of Refuge" for ships in distress. When any ship is in distress condition during her voyage, she needs a place of refuge in time to save the whole adventure.
Sumon Ganguly

The "Resolution A. 949 (23) Guidelines" on place of refuge for ships in need of assistance is related to the ship which needs assistance where the safety of life is not involved. Where safety of life is involved, the provisions of Maritime search and Rescue convention on 1979 ( The 1979 convention was adopted in Hamburg to develop an international SAR plan, so that, it will not be prime factor to determine as to where the accident occurs. The rescue of persons in distress at sea will be co-ordinated by a SAR organisation and, when necessary, with the cooperation between the neighbouring SAR organisation) will continue.

The "Resolution Guideline" provides that where a ship has suffered a damage, it will be in order to prevent the damage and environment pollution at the earliest. The cargo and bunkers should be removed for repairing of the ship in a place of refuge but bringing the vessel into a place of refuge near the coastal state may hamper the Coastal State both economically and environment point of view. The local authorities and inhabitants may not allow to carry out such repairing operation. Hence, it may be a political decision to allow the vessel at the Place of refuge on case to case basis unless the environment issue is amicably resolved between the ship and the Coastal State.

The second "Resolution A 950(23) Maritime Assistance Services (MAS) recommends to develop maritime assistance service (MAS)" in all coastal states which will collect various reports, consultations and notifications in a number of IMO instruments; monitoring the situation of the ship to ascertain whether the ship is in need of assistance in her distress condition, exchange information between the Ship and the Coastal state and with the Salvors engaged for maritime salvage if the Coastal State desire to monitor all the operation The monitoring of all such operation is necessary to prevent the risk of oil pollution.

History of place of refuge


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November 2019