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The Merchant Shipping (Life-Saving Appliances for Passenger Ships of Classes III to VI (A)) Regulations 1992

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Regulation 2(3) and 14

PART VIFLOAT FREE ARRANGEMENTS

General

1.  Float free arrangements shall provide for a liferaft to be released automatically in the event of a ship sinking.

Painter System

2.  The liferaft painter system shall provide a connection between the ship and the liferaft and shall be so arranged as to ensure that the liferaft when released and in the case of an inflatable liferaft when inflated, is not dragged under by the sinking ship.

Hydrostatic Release Unit

Construction

3.1  A hydrostatic release unit used in the float-free arrangements shall be so constructed that:

3.1.1 the materials used are compatible so as to prevent malfunction of the unit; galvanising or other forms of metallic coating on parts of the release unit will not be accepted;

3.1.2 it has drains to prevent the accumulation of water in the hydrostatic chamber when the unit is in its normal position;

3.1.3 each part connected to the painter system has a strength not less than that required by the painter;

3.1.4 it can readily be removed for replacement or annual servicing.

Materials and Components

3.2  Materials and components shall be corrosion-resistant and not affected by seawater, oil or detergents.

Performance

3.3  A hydrostatic release unit shall:

3.3.1 function properly throughout an air temperature range of −30°C to +65°C;

3.3.2 function properly throughout a seawater temperature range of −1°C to +30°C;

3.3.3 automatically release the liferaft at a depth of not more than 4 metres;

3.3.4 not release prematurely when seas wash over the unit;

3.3.5 be capable of releasing a liferaft when the stowage is:

3.3.5.1.horizontal;

3.3.5.2tilted 45° and 100° with the hydrostatic release unit at the upper side;

3.3.5.3tilted 45° and 100° with the hydrostatic release unit at the lower side;

3.3.5.4vertical.

Marking

3.4.  A hydrostatic release unit shall be marked permanently on its exterior with a means of identifying its type, serial number, depth at which it will release, and in addition if a type which;

3.4.1 requires servicing with its date of manufacture and a small plate permanently attached to the unit for recording the date of servicing;

3.4.2 is disposable, with the date at which it must be replaced.

Instructions and Information

3.5  Instructions and information required for inclusion in the training manual specified in Part I of Schedule 11 and in the instructions for on-board maintenance specified in Part II of Schedule 11 shall be in a form suitable for inclusion in such training manual and instructions for on-board maintenance.

Instructions and information shall be in English in a clear and concise form and shall include the following:

3.5.1 general description of the unit;

3.5.2 installation instructions;

3.5.3 any on board maintenance requirements;

3.5.4 servicing requirements.

4.  Weak Link

Construction and Materials

4.1  A weak link used in the float-free arrangements shall:

4.1.1 be made from the material which is corrosion resistant and not affected by seawater, oil or detergent;

4.1.2 when made of cordage have the ends either whipped or heat treated;

4.1.3 when made from a flexible wire have each end looped around a thimble and secured with a locking ferrule.

Performance

4.2  A weak link shall be of sufficient strength to:

4.2.1 pull the painter out of the liferaft container;

4.2.2 operate the liferaft inflation system;

4.2.3 break under a tensile force of between 1.8 and 2.6 kNs.

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