Lifeboat Arrangements Related Deficiencies

According to statistic data of PSC inspections for ships classed with ClassNK in 2011, a frequency of PSC pointing-out deficiencies with the lifeboat arrangements had once decreased in 2010, however, it was increased again in 2011 to the top frequency (277 deficiencies pointed out / 78 detentions).

Analysis of PCS inspection reports shows that the main items, with which deficiencies were pointed out, are as follows:

  1. Releasing gear: 32 deficiencies
  2. Engine (including fuel, lub., exh. and cooling systems, clutch and battery): 71 deficiencies,
  3. Battery for starter: 26 deficiencies
  4. Reflective tape: 15 deficiencies

These deficiencies themselves may be judged “to be rectified before departure” etc. However, if two or more deficiencies are found concurrently, these can be objective evidences for the judgement of non-conformity with ISM Code 10 “Maintenance of the Ship and Equipment”, and that often results ship detention.

Ship managers usually specify the SMS Procedure on check and maintenance of lifeboat arrangements, basing on the recommended plan and guidance by the makers. According to a standardized check & maintenance plan prepared by the makers, in each opportunity of weekly, monthly and at drill, some check items with releasing gear, and engine & its surroundings are specified. Therefore, NKK suggests to:

  1. Confirm whether the relevant SMS Procedure satisfies the maker-recommended plan, etc.
  2. Instruct the vessels under  management,  to confirm the detailed check points (i.e., for releasing gear, weekly check points are the sureness of resetting and cleanliness of the moving parts) & its guidance at each occasion when they carry out the check & maintenance specified in SMS Procedure.

Regarding reflective tapes (broken, scraped or paint-damaged), it might not be described in a maker-recommended plan. Please consider to describe this item into your own plan, as necessary. Moreover, reflective tapes should be fitted on top of the gunwale as well as on the outside of the boat as near the gunwale as possible. The tapes should be sufficiently wide and long and should be spaced at suitable intervals (as per manufacturer). The top of the canopy should be fitted with retro-reflective tapes similar to those mentioned above but shaped in the form of a cross and spaced at suitable intervals.

In addition to the above, the following items indicated here below may be part of a lifeboat’s releasing gear system inspection in order to ensure compliance with ISM Code 10 “Maintenance of the Ship and Equipment”

Hook reset position

Hook gap

Interlock spring condition

Incorrect interlock setting

Overlapped area

Corroded hook side Bkt

Hook supporting Bkt


Cable corrosion damage

Damaged Cable

Corrosion nearby cable clamp

Detached Interlock Cable

Condition of the hydrostatic interlock unit and the cable connection

Sources: NKK, KRS

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