The Merchant Shipping (Bridge Visibility) (Small Passenger Ships) Regulations 2019

Document Number:2019 No. 1025
Coming into force:Coming into force on the 10/07/2019

Statutory Instruments

Merchant Shipping



13 th June 2019

Laid before Parliament

18 th June 2019

Coming into force

10 th July 2019

The Secretary of State makes the following Regulations in exercise of the powers conferred by sections 85(1)(a) and (b) , (3) and (5) to (7) and 86(1) of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995(1).

The Secretary of State has consulted the persons referred to in section 86(4) of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995.

Citation and commencement

  1. These Regulations may be cited as the Merchant Shipping (Bridge Visibility) (Small Passenger Ships) Regulations 2019 and come into force on 10 th July 2019.


  2. The Merchant Shipping (Bridge Visibility) (Small Passenger Ships) Regulations 2005(2) are revoked.


  3. In these Regulations—

    “enclosed passenger deck” means any passenger deck which is, or may be, enclosed by fixed or moveable screens, but does not include a passenger deck which—

    is fitted with a canopy, and

    has no means, either temporary or permanent, for side or end screens to be fitted to the deck or any other part of the ship;

    “existing ship” means a ship which is not a new ship;

    “favourable weather” means fine, clear and settled weather with a sea state such as to cause only moderate rolling and/or pitching;

    “fixed permanent structure”—

    includes any portion of the hull which is capable of being detached, but which is fixed in place during the normal operation of the vessel; and

    does not include functional arrangements such as safety rails, bowsprits, pulpits, stemhead fittings, rudders, steering gear, outdrives, outboard motors, propulsion machinery, diving platforms, boarding platforms, rubbing strips and fenders, other than where such functional arrangements are designed to replace any part of the hull that has been removed;

    “IMO” means the International Maritime Organization;

    “length” means length overall;

    “length overall” means the distance between the foreside of the foremost fixed permanent structure and the afterside of the aftermost fixed permanent structure;

    “Merchant Shipping Notice” means a notice described as such, issued by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (an executive agency of the Department for Transport) , and includes a reference to any document amending or replacing that Notice which is considered by the Secretary of State to be relevant from time to time and is specified in a Merchant Shipping Notice;

    “new ship” means either—

    a ship the keel of which is laid, or which is at a similar stage of construction, on or after 31 st October 1992 , or

    a ship the keel of which was laid, or which was at a similar stage of construction, before 31 st October 1992 , but which was not a passenger ship, which is converted to a passenger ship after 31 st October 1992 ,

    and, for the purposes of sub-paragraph (b) , a ship is to be treated as constructed on the date on which such conversion commences;

    “open passenger deck” means a passenger deck which is not an enclosed passenger deck;

    “passenger” means every person other than—

    the master and the members of the crew or other persons employed or engaged in any capacity on board a ship on the business of that ship,

    a child under one year of age, and

    persons who are on board the ship by reason of force majeure or in consequence of the obligation laid upon the master to carry shipwrecked or other persons;

    “passenger deck” means any deck space to which passengers have access;

    “passenger ship” means a ship carrying more than 12 passengers;

    “restricted period” means a period falling wholly within the following limits—

    from 1 st April to 31 st October, both dates inclusive, and

    between one hour before sunrise and one hour after sunset in the case of ships fitted with navigation lights conforming to the Merchant Shipping (Distress Signals and Prevention of Collisions) Regulations 1996(3) and between sunrise and sunset in the case of any other ship;

    “similar stage of construction” means, for the purposes of the definition of “new ship”, the stage at which—

    construction identifiable with a particular ship begins, and

    assembly of that ship has commenced comprising at least 50 tonnes or one per cent of the estimated mass of all structural material, whichever is the less;

    “tidal waters” means any United Kingdom waters which are within the ebb and flow of the tide at ordinary spring tides;

    “visibility” means visibility over a horizontal arc, and “all-round visibility” means visibility over an arc of 360 degrees; and

    “voyage” includes an excursion.


  4. —(1) Subject to paragraph (3) , these Regulations apply in tidal waters to passenger ships of Classes IV, V, VI and VI (A) of less than 55 metres in length.

    (2) For the purposes of paragraph (1)—

    “Class IV” means a ship engaged only on voyages in Category A, B, C or D waters;

    “Class V” means a ship engaged only on voyages in Category A, B or C waters;

    “Class VI” means a ship engaged only on voyages with not more than 250 passengers on board, to sea, or in Category A, B, C or D waters, in all cases in favourable weather and during restricted periods, in the course of which the ships are at no time more than 15 miles, exclusive of any Category A, B, C or D waters, from their point of departure nor more than three miles from land; and


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