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Consultation on the carriage of cargoes and dangerous goods launched

Posted inRegulationbyYasmin Talbot

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency launches 6-week consultation on new merchant shipping regulations.

It’s time to have your say on changes to important shipping regulations.  

Current UK laws on the carriage of cargoes and dangerous goods are being revised and updated by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, to make sure they continue enforcing safety at sea in line with international safety standards.  

The first proposed set of regulations is the Merchant Shipping (Carriage of Cargoes) Regulations 2024. This will revoke and replace the current Merchant Shipping (Carriage of Cargoes) Regulations 1999.  

This new legislation largely updates and restates existing law, but ensures it is up to date and reflective of international law too. This includes the implementation of the International Maritime Solid Bulk Cargoes (IMSBC) Code – ensuring the safe stowage and shipment of solid bulk cargoes – and a prohibition on the at-sea blending of liquid chemicals.  

The proposed Merchant Shipping (Carriage of Dangerous Goods and Harmful Substances) Regulations 2024 deals with substances like marine pollutants and irradiated nuclear fuel. This will revoke the Merchant Shipping (Dangerous Goods and Marine Pollutants) Regulations 1997, and, along with 6 other dangerous goods related Statutory Instruments, consolidate and restate the requirements.  

The International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships Carrying Liquefied Gases in Bulk (IGC Code) – already mandatory in the UK – will also be included in the updated regulations. This code ensures the safe transport of liquified gases and similar substances thanks to design and construction guidelines.  

The latest regulations have now gone to consultation for 6 weeks, so make sure your voice is heard.  

Virginia McVea, Maritime and Coastguard Agency Chief Executive, said:  

"We are committed to maritime safety and keep legislation under reviews to ensure that the UK industry continues to be at the forefront of safety.  

"When it comes to cargo and dangerous goods we are committed to reflecting international standards. Updating these regulations will make this more accessible for all and strengthen our ability to ensure safer shipping.  

"I encourage you to share your thoughts by taking part in the consultation."

Both consultations will end on 19 January 2024.

Visit the Consultation on the merchant shipping (carriage of dangerous goods and harmful substances) regulations 2024 - GOV.UK page to take part.

Visit the Consultation on the merchant shipping (carriage of cargoes) regulations 2024 - GOV.UK page to take part.