Lifejacket written procedures and training mandatory from 1 August 2023

From 1 August 2023, if you own or operate a fishing vessel you will need to address lifejacket wear requirements in your safety management system’s risk (SMS) and have written procedures.

Vessel owners are also required to consider the management of lifejackets to ensure that they are readily available if needed.

It does not mean lifejackets are mandatory to wear at all times – but does mean your vessel SMS must set out when lifejackets should be worn (eg wind and sea conditions).

Making sure that when to wear a lifejacket is built into your risk assessment and safety management system are new requirements which will be in force from 1 August 2023 via a new Marine Order 504 (Certificates of operation and operation requirements).

The new Marine Order 504 follows extensive consultation with industry in recent years to improve operational safety and increase lifejacket wearing on domestic commercial vessels, after dozens of preventable fatalities over a 10-year period.

You can find out more here.