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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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PART ILIFEBUOYS (SOLAS)

Construction

1.1  A lifebuoy shall be constructed with proper workmanship and materials.

1.2  As applicable the materials of a lifebuoy shall be rot-proof, corrosion resistant, and not be unduly affected by sea-water, oil or fungal attack.

1.3  A lifebuoy shall be of a highly visible colour.

1.4  It shall be fitted with retro-reflective material where it will assist in detection and the dimensions and location of the material shall be to the satisfaction of the Secretary of State.

1.5  A lifebuoy shall have an outer diameter of not more than 800 mm and an inner diameter of not less than 400 mm.

1.6  A lifebuoy shall be constructed of inherently buoyant material. It shall not depend upon rushes, cork shavings or granulated cork, any other loose granulated material or any air compartment which depends on inflation for buoyancy.

1.7  It shall have a mass of not less than 2.5 kg provided that if intended to operate a quick release arrangement for a self-activating smoke signal and self-igniting light it shall have a mass sufficient to operate the quick release arrangement or 4 kg, whichever is the greater.

1.8  It shall be constructed to withstand a drop into water from the height at which it is stowed above the waterline in the lightest seagoing conditions or 30 metres, whichever is the greater, without impairing either its operating capability or that of its attached components.

1.9  It shall be fitted with a grabline not less than 9.5 mm in diameter and of length not less than 4 times the outside diameter of the lifebuoy. The grabline shall be secured at four equidistant points around the circumference of the lifebuoy to form four equal loops.

Performance

2.1  A lifebuoy shall not be damaged in stowage throughout the air temperature range −30°C to +65°C.

2.2  It shall operate throughout a sea-water temperature range of −1°C to +30°C.

2.3  A lifebuoy shall be resistant to deterioration from exposure to sunlight.

2.4  It shall be capable of satisfactory operation in a seaway.

2.5  A lifebuoy shall be capable of supporting not less than 14.5 kg of iron in fresh water for period of 24 hours.

2.6  It shall not sustain burning or continue melting after being totally enveloped in a fire for a period of 2 seconds.

Marking

3.1  A lifebuoy shall be marked in block capitals of the Roman alphabet with the name and the port of registry of the ship on which it is carried.

3.2  A lifebuoy constructed of synthetic materials shall be permanently marked with the manufacturer’s trade mark or trade name of the lifebuoy and the words “DOT (UK) APPROVED”.

3.3  A lifebuoy shall be permanently marked with the maximum height above the waterline at which it can be stowed if this exceeds 30 metres.

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