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IMO (International Maritime Organization)
The International Maritime Organization (IMO), known as the Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization (IMCO) until 1982, was established in Geneva in 1948 and came into force ten years later, meeting for the first time in 1959.
Headquartered in London, United Kingdom, the IMO is a specialised agency of the United Nations with 171 Member States and three Associate Members. The IMO’s primary purpose is to develop and maintain a comprehensive regulatory framework for shipping and its remit today includes safety, environmental concerns, legal matters, technical co-operation, maritime security and the efficiency of shipping. IMO is governed by an Assembly of members and is financially administered by a Council of members elected from the Assembly. The work of IMO is conducted through five committees and these are supported by technical subcommittees. Member organisations of the UN organizational family may observe the proceedings of the IMO. Observer status is granted to qualified non-governmental organisations.
IMO is supported by a permanent secretariat of employees who are representative of its members. The secretariat is composed of a Secretary-General who is periodically elected by the Assembly, and various divisions such as those for marine safety, environmental protection, and a conference section.
Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization (IMCO) was formed to fulfill a desire to bring the regulation of the safety of shipping into an international framework, for which the creation of the United Nations provided an opportunity. Hitherto such international conventions had been initiated piecemeal, notably the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS), first adopted in 1914 following the Titanic disaster. IMCO’s first task was to update that Convention; the resulting 1960 Convention was subsequently recast and updated in 1974 and it is that Convention that has been subsequently modified and updated to adapt to changes in safety requirements and technology.
According to Master Mariner John Christianson of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, when IMCO began its operations in 1958 certain other pre-existing instruments were brought under its aegis, most notable the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution of the Sea by Oil (OILPOL) 1954. Throughout its existence IMCO, renamed the IMO in 1982, has continued to produce new and updated instruments across a wide range of maritime issues covering not only safety of life and marine pollution but also encompassing safe navigation, search and rescue, wreck removal, tonnage measurement, liability and compensation, ship recycling, the training and certification of seafarers, and piracy. More recently SOLAS has been amended to bring an increased focus on maritime security through the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code. The IMO has also increased its focus on air emissions from ships.
In 1983 the IMO established the World Maritime University in Malmö, Sweden.
To become a member of the IMO, a state ratifies a multilateral treaty known as the Convention on the International Maritime Organization. As of 2014, there are 171 member states of the IMO, which includes 170 of the UN members and the Cook Islands. The first state to ratify the convention was the United Kingdom in 1949. The most recent member to join was Zambia, which became an IMO member in 2014.
Associate members: Faroe Islands, Hong Kong and Macao.
UN member states that are not members of IMO are generally landlocked countries, including: Afghanistan, Andorra, Armenia, Belarus, Bhutan, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Mali, Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, Niger, Rwanda, South Sudan, Swaziland, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.
The Organization consists of an Assembly, a Council and five main Committees: the Maritime Safety Committee; the Marine Environment Protection Committee; the Legal Committee; the Technical Co-operation Committee and the Facilitation Committee. A number of Sub-Committees support the work of the main technical committees.
IMO is the source of approximately 60 legal instruments that guide the regulatory development of its member states to improve safety at sea, facilitate trade among seafaring states and protect the maritime environment. The most well known is the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), as well as International Convention on Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Co-operation (OPRC). Others include the International Oil Pollution Compensation Funds. It also functions as a depository of yet to be ratified treaties, such as the International Convention on Liability and Compensation for Damage in Connection with the Carriage of Hazardous and Noxious Substances by Sea, 1996 (HNS Convention) and Nairobi International Convention of Removal of Wrecks (2007).
IMO regularly enacts regulations, which are broadly enforced by national and local maritime authorities in member countries, such as the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREG). The IMO has also enacted a Port State Control (PSC) authority, allowing domestic maritime authorities such as coast guards to inspect foreign-flag ships calling at ports of the many port states. Memoranda of Understanding (protocols) were signed by some countries unifying Port State Control procedures among the signatories.
Recent initiatives at the IMO have included amendments to SOLAS, which upgraded fire protection standards on passenger ships, the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) which establishes basic requirements on training, certification and watchkeeping for seafarers and to the Convention on the Prevention of Maritime Pollution (MARPOL 73/78), which required double hulls on all tankers.
In December 2002, new amendments to the 1974 SOLAS Convention were enacted. These amendments gave rise to the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code, which went into effect on 1 July 2004. The concept of the code is to provide layered and redundant defences against smuggling, terrorism, piracy, stowaways, etc. The ISPS Code required most ships and port facilities engaged in international trade to establish and maintain strict security procedures as specified in ship and port specific Ship Security Plans and Port Facility Security Plans.
The IMO is also responsible for publishing the International Code of Signals for use between merchant and naval vessels.
The First Intersessional Meeting of IMO’s Working Group on Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Ships took place in Oslo, Norway (23–27 June 2008), tasked with developing the technical basis for the reduction mechanisms that may form part of a future IMO regime to control greenhouse gas emissions from international shipping, and a draft of the actual reduction mechanisms themselves, for further consideration by IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC).
IMO is harmonising information available to seafarers and shore-side traffic services called e-Navigation. An e-Navigation strategy was ratified in 2005, and an implementation plan is being developed through three IMO sub-committees. The plan is expected to be completed in 2012.
IMO has also served as a key partner and enabler of US international and interagency efforts to establish Maritime Domain Awareness.
Governance of IMO
The governing body of the International Maritime Organization is the Assembly which meets every two years. In between Assembly sessions a Council, consisting of 40 Member States elected by the Assembly, acts as the governing body. The technical work of the International Maritime Organization is carried out by a series of Committees. The Secretariat consists of some 300 international civil servants headed by a Secretary-General.
The current Secretary-General is Koji Sekimizu (Japan), elected for a four-year term at the 106th session of the IMO Council in June 2011 and at the 27th session of the IMO’s Assembly in November 2011. His mandate started on 1 January 2012.
1959 Ove Nielsen (Denmark)
1961 William Graham (United Kingdom; acting, following death of Mr Nielsen)
1963 Jean Roulier (France)
1968 Colin Goad (United Kingdom)
1974 Chandrika Prasad Srivastava (India)
1990 William O’Neil (Canada)
2003 Efthimios E. Mitropoulos (Greece)
2011 Koji Sekimizu (Japan)
The technical work of the International Maritime Organisation is carried out by a series of Committees. This includes:
The Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC)
The Legal Committee
The Technical Cooperation Committee, for capacity building
The Facilitation Committee, to simplify the documentation and formalities required in international shipping.
Maritime Safety Committee
It is regulated in the Article 28(a) of the Convention on the IMO:
(a) The Maritime Safety Committee shall consider any matter within the scope of the Organization concerned with aids to navigation, construction and equipment of vessels, manning from a safety standpoint, rules for the prevention of collisions, handling of dangerous cargoes, maritime safety procedures and requirements, hydrographic information, log-books and navigational records, marine casualty investigation, salvage and rescue, and any other matters directly affecting maritime safety.
(b) The Maritime Safety Committee shall provide machinery for performing any duties assigned to it by this Convention, the Assembly or the Council, or any duty within the scope of this Article which may be assigned to it by or under any other international instrument and accepted by the Organization.
(c) Having regard to the provisions of Article 25, the Maritime Safety Committee, upon request by the Assembly or the Council or, if it deems such action useful in the interests of its own work, shall maintain such close relationship with other bodies as may further the purposes of the Organization
The Maritime Safety Committee is the most senior of these and is the main Technical Committee; it oversees the work of its nine sub-committees and initiates new topics. One broad topic it deals with is the effect of the human element on casualties; this work has been put to all of the sub-committees, but meanwhile, the Maritime Safety Committee has developed a code for the management of ships which will ensure that agreed operational procedures are in place and followed by the ship and shore-side staff.
The MSC and MEPC are assisted in their work by a number of sub-committees which are open to all Member States:
Sub-Committee on Human Element, Training and Watchkeeping (HTW)
Sub-Committee on Implementation of IMO Instruments (III)
Sub-Committee on Navigation, Communications and Search and Rescue (NCSR)
Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR)
Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Construction (SDC)
Sub-Committee on Ship Systems and Equipment (SSE)
Sub-Committee on Carriage of Cargoes and Containers (CCC)
Until 2013 there were nine Sub-Committees as follows:
Bulk Liquids and Gases (BLG)
Carriage of Dangerous Goods, Solid Cargoes and Containers(DSC)
Fire Protection (FP)
Radio-communications and Search and Rescue (COMSAR)
Safety of Navigation (NAV)
Ship Design and Equipment (DE)
Stability and Load Lines and Fishing Vessels Safety (SLF)
Standards of Training and Watchkeeping (STW)
Flag State Implementation (FSI)
Resolution MSC.255(84), of 16 May 2008, adopts the Code of the International Standards and Recommended Practices for a Safety Investigation into a Marine Casualty or Marine Incident. It is also known as the Casualty Investigation Code.
More from Wikipedia.
ISO (The International Organization for Standardization)
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an international standard-setting body composed of representatives from various national standards organizations.
Founded on 23 February 1947, the organization promotes worldwide proprietary, industrial and commercial standards. It is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, and as of 2015 works in 196 countries.
It was one of the first organizations granted general consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
ISO, the International Organization for Standardization, is an independent, non-governmental organization, the members of which are the standards organization of the 164 member countries. It is the world’s largest developer of voluntary international standards and facilitates world trade by providing common standards between nations. Nearly twenty thousand standards have been set covering everything from manufactured products and technology to food safety, agriculture and healthcare.
Use of the standards aids in the creation of products and services that are safe, reliable and of good quality. The standards help businesses increase productivity while minimizing errors and waste. By enabling products from different markets to be directly compared, they facilitate companies in entering new markets and assist in the development of global trade on a fair basis. The standards also serve to safeguard consumers and the end-users of products and services, ensuring that certified products conform to the minimum standards set internationally.
Name and abbreviations
The three official languages of the ISO are English, French, and Russian. The name of the organization in French is Organisation internationale de normalisation, and in Russian, Международная организация по стандартизации. According to the ISO, as its name in different languages would have different abbreviations (“IOS” in English, “OIN” in French, etc.), the organization adopted “ISO” as its abbreviated name in reference to the Greek word isos (ἴσος, meaning equal). However, during the founding meetings of the new organization, this Greek word was not evoked, so this explanation may have been imagined later.
Both the name “ISO” and the logo are registered trademarks, and their use is restricted.
The organization today known as ISO began in 1926 as the International Federation of the National Standardizing Associations (ISA). It was suspended in 1942 during World War II, but after the war ISA was approached by the recently formed United Nations Standards Coordinating Committee (UNSCC) with a proposal to form a new global standards body. In October 1946, ISA and UNSCC delegates from 25 countries met in London and agreed to join forces to create the new International Organization for Standardization; the new organization officially began operations in February 1947.
ISO is a voluntary organization whose members are recognized authorities on standards, each one representing one country. Members meet annually at a General Assembly to discuss ISO’s strategic objectives. The organization is coordinated by a Central Secretariat based inGeneva.
A Council with a rotating membership of 20 member bodies provides guidance and governance, including setting the Central Secretariat’s annual budget.
The Technical Management Board is responsible for over 250 technical committees, who develop the ISO standards.
IEC joint committees
ISO has formed joint committees with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) to develop standards and terminology in the areas of electrical, electronic and related technologies.
ISO/IEC JTC 1
Main article: ISO/IEC JTC 1
ISO/IEC Joint Technical Committee 1 (JTC 1) was created in 1987 to “[d]evelop, maintain, promote and facilitate IT standards”.
ISO/IEC JTC 2
Joint Project Committee – Energy efficiency and renewable energy sources – Common terminology
ISO/IEC Joint Technical Committee 2 (JTC 2) was created in 2009 for the purpose of “[s]tandardization in the field of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources”.
ISO has 162 national members, out of the 206 total countries in the world.
ISO has three membership categories:
- Member bodies are national bodies considered the most representative standards body in each country. These are the only members of ISO that have voting rights.
- Correspondent members are countries that do not have their own standards organization. These members are informed about ISO’s work, but do not participate in standards promulgation.
- Subscriber members are countries with small economies. They pay reduced membership fees, but can follow the development of standards.
Participating members are called “P” members, as opposed to observing members, who are called “O” members.
ISO is funded by a combination of:
- Organizations that manage the specific projects or loan experts to participate in the technical work.
- Subscriptions from member bodies. These subscriptions are in proportion to each country’s gross national product and trade figures.
- Sale of standards.
International Standards and other publications
See also: List of International Organization for Standardization standards
ISO’s main products are international standards. ISO also publishes technical reports, technical specifications, publicly available specifications, technical corrigenda, and guides.
These are designated using the format ISO[/IEC] [/ASTM] [IS] nnnnn[-p]:[yyyy] Title, where nnnnn is the number of the standard, p is an optional part number,yyyy is the year published, and Title describes the subject. IEC for International Electrotechnical Commission is included if the standard results from the work of ISO/IEC JTC1 (the ISO/IEC Joint Technical Committee). ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) is used for standards developed in cooperation withASTM International. yyyy and IS are not used for an incomplete or unpublished standard and may under some circumstances be left off the title of a published work.
These are issued when a technical committee or subcommittee has collected data of a different kind from that normally published as an International Standard,such as references and explanations. The naming conventions for these are the same as for standards, except TR prepended instead of IS in the report’s name.
ISO/IEC TR 17799:2000 Code of Practice for Information Security Management
ISO/TR 19033:2000 Technical product documentation — Metadata for construction documentation
Technical and publicly available specifications
Technical specifications may be produced when “the subject in question is still under development or where for any other reason there is the future but not immediate possibility of an agreement to publish an International Standard”. A publicly available specification is usually “an intermediate specification, published prior to the development of a full International Standard, or, in IEC may be a ‘dual logo’ publication published in collaboration with an external organization”. By convention, both types of specification are named in a manner similar to the organization’s technical reports.
ISO/TS 16952-1:2006 Technical product documentation — Reference designation system — Part 1: General application rules
ISO/PAS 11154:2006 Road vehicles — Roof load carriers
ISO also sometimes issues “technical corrigenda” (where “corrigenda” is the plural of corrigendum). These are amendments made to existing standards due to minor technical flaws, usability improvements, or limited-applicability extensions. They are generally issued with the expectation that the affected standard will be updated or withdrawn at its next scheduled review.
These are meta-standards covering “matters related to international standardization”.They are named using the format “ISO[/IEC] Guide N:yyyy: Title”.
ISO/IEC Guide 2:2004 Standardization and related activities — General vocabulary
ISO/IEC Guide 65:1996 General requirements for bodies operating product certification
A standard published by ISO/IEC is the last stage of a long process that commonly starts with the proposal of new work within a committee. Here are some abbreviations used for marking a standard with its status:
PWI – Preliminary Work Item
NP or NWIP – New Proposal / New Work Item Proposal (e.g., ISO/IEC NP 23007)
AWI – Approved new Work Item (e.g., ISO/IEC AWI 15444-14)
WD – Working Draft (e.g., ISO/IEC WD 27032)
CD – Committee Draft (e.g., ISO/IEC CD 23000-5)
FCD – Final Committee Draft (e.g., ISO/IEC FCD 23000-12)
DIS – Draft International Standard (e.g., ISO/IEC DIS 14297)
FDIS – Final Draft International Standard (e.g., ISO/IEC FDIS 27003)
PRF – Proof of a new International Standard (e.g., ISO/IEC PRF 18018)
IS – International Standard (e.g., ISO/IEC 13818-1:2007)
Abbreviations used for amendments:
NP Amd – New Proposal Amendment (e.g., ISO/IEC 15444-2:2004/NP Amd 3)
AWI Amd – Approved new Work Item Amendment (e.g., ISO/IEC 14492:2001/AWI Amd 4)
WD Amd – Working Draft Amendment (e.g., ISO 11092:1993/WD Amd 1)
CD Amd / PDAmd – Committee Draft Amendment / Proposed Draft Amendment (e.g., ISO/IEC 13818-1:2007/CD Amd 6)
FPDAmd / DAM (DAmd) – Final Proposed Draft Amendment / Draft Amendment (e.g., ISO/IEC 14496-14:2003/FPDAmd 1)
FDAM (FDAmd) – Final Draft Amendment (e.g., ISO/IEC 13818-1:2007/FDAmd 4)
PRF Amd – (e.g., ISO 12639:2004/PRF Amd 1)
Amd – Amendment (e.g., ISO/IEC 13818-1:2007/Amd 1:2007)
TR – Technical Report (e.g., ISO/IEC TR 19791:2006)
DTR – Draft Technical Report (e.g., ISO/IEC DTR 19791)
TS – Technical Specification (e.g., ISO/TS 16949:2009)
DTS – Draft Technical Specification (e.g., ISO/DTS 11602-1)
PAS – Publicly Available Specification
TTA – Technology Trends Assessment (e.g., ISO/TTA 1:1994)
IWA – International Workshop Agreement (e.g., IWA 1:2005)
Cor – Technical Corrigendum (e.g., ISO/IEC 13818-1:2007/Cor 1:2008)
Guide – a guidance to technical committees for the preparation of standards
International Standards are developed by ISO technical committees (TC) and subcommittees (SC) by a process with six steps:
Stage 1: Proposal stage
Stage 2: Preparatory stage
Stage 3: Committee stage
Stage 4: Enquiry stage
Stage 5: Approval stage
Stage 6: Publication stage
The TC/SC may set up working groups (WG) of experts for the preparation of a working drafts. Subcommittees may have several working groups, which can have several Sub Groups (SG).
It is possible to omit certain stages, if there is a document with a certain degree of maturity at the start of a standardization project, for example a standard developed by another organization. ISO/IEC directives allow also the so-called “Fast-track procedure”. In this procedure a document is submitted directly for approval as a draft International Standard (DIS) to the ISO member bodies or as a final draft International Standard (FDIS) if the document was developed by an international standardizing body recognized by the ISO Council.
The first step—a proposal of work (New Proposal) is approved at the relevant subcommittee or technical committee (e.g., SC29 and JTC1 respectively in the case ofMoving Picture Experts Group – ISO/IEC JTC1/SC29/WG11). A working group (WG) of experts is set up by the TC/SC for the preparation of a working draft. When the scope of a new work is sufficiently clarified, some of the working groups (e.g., MPEG) usually make open request for proposals—known as a “call for proposals”. The first document that is produced for example for audio and video coding standards is called a verification model (VM) (previously also called a “simulation and test model”). When a sufficient confidence in the stability of the standard under development is reached, a working draft (WD) is produced. This is in the form of a standard but is kept internal to working group for revision. When a working draft is sufficiently solid and the working group is satisfied that it has developed the best technical solution to the problem being addressed, it becomes committee draft (CD). If it is required, it is then sent to the P-members of the TC/SC (national bodies) for ballot.
The CD becomes final committee draft (FCD) if the number of positive votes is above the quorum. Successive committee drafts may be considered until consensus is reached on the technical content. When it is reached, the text is finalized for submission as a draft International Standard (DIS). The text is then submitted to national bodies for voting and comment within a period of five months. It is approved for submission as a final draft International Standard (FDIS) if a two-thirds majority of the P-members of the TC/SC are in favour and not more than one-quarter of the total number of votes cast are negative. ISO will then hold a ballot with National Bodies where no technical changes are allowed (yes/no ballot), within a period of two months. It is approved as an International Standard (IS) if a two-thirds majority of the P-members of the TC/SC is in favour and not more than one-quarter of the total number of votes cast are negative. After approval, only minor editorial changes are introduced into the final text. The final text is sent to the ISO Central Secretariat, which publishes it as the International Standard.
ISO 12215 Small craft. Hull construction and scantlings.
ISO 12215-1:2000 Materials. Thermosetting resins, glass-fibre reinforcement, reference laminate.
ISO 12215-2:2002 Materials. Core materials for sandwich construction, embedded materials.
ISO 12215-3:2002 Materials. Steel, aluminium alloys, wood, other materials.
ISO 12215-4:2002 Workshop and manufacturing.
ISO 12215-5:2008 Design pressures for monohulls, design stresses, scantlings determination.
ISO 12215-6:2008 Structural arrangements and details.
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FROM Huey: "I agree with my Uncle, I too have found the articles to be very enlightening. They say that it will take about 50,000 articles to cover the full scope that they have envisioned for the website. They have over 10,000 articles so far and that's doing pretty well, but it could take several years to get the rest. I also noticed that many of the Main Topic Pages and some of the article pages are still in the rough draft stage. I guess that they will fill in as they can get volunteers to work on them. But what I can't figure out is why anyone would spend the time writing informative in depth articles just to give away free to this website for publication? What's in it for them?"
FROM Dewey: "Well Huey, to me It looks like most of the articles on this website are written by very informed people, like boating instructors, boat designers, boat builders, riggers, electricians, fitters, marine repair technicians and marine surveyors. Writing such articles helps establish them as knowledgeable professionals. After all, this website was originally created by a school for marine technicians and marine surveyors. The website is growing in content every day. They even had to move to a bigger, more powerful server on October 15, 2018 because the website's traffic has been growing exponentially."
FROM Louie: "I agree with everyone above. This site is quickly becoming the ultimate reference resource about every aspect of boats and ships for everyone from the beginning recreational boater to the seasoned professional mariner. I use the topic pages on the right sidebar to browse around the website. It's like a Junior Woodchucks' Guidebook for Boaters. Their Members' Library of over 300 popular and obscure books and over 200 magazine back issues that can be viewed online is fabulous. The Academy's magazine is especially informative. On top of that, there is the "Ask-An-Expert program for members where you can get an expert's answer to any of your boat questions. And a whole years membership is only $25. What a deal! I really love being part of this "Everything About Boats" community and help provide thousands of helpful articles free to the public. I think that I'll sit down right now and write an article about my experiences boating with my uncle."
FROM Scrooge: "You rave about this website like it was the best thing since sliced bread. Well, I think it stinks. Sure, it has a lot of good information for boaters, and they're adding more every day, but it will probably never be finished. Furthermore, I don't even own a boat. And I wouldn't have a boat even if someone gave me one. Boats are a waste of money and time and energy and money! They're just a hole in the water you pour money into. If you gave me a boat, I'd sell it quicker then you could say Baggywrinkle. Then I'd lock up the cash with all my other money so I could keep my eye on it and count it every day. Bah humbug."
FROM Daisy: "I'm just so glad that Donald got the boat so we and the boys could enjoy boating — together. And of course all of the girls, April, May, and June, love to be on the water too, especially when that is where the boys are. Oh poor Scrooge, boating is more fun then you could possibly imagine."
FROM Scrooge: "After seeing how much fun you all have on the water together, I regret that I didn't have that much fun when I was young. I've had a change of heart, and I'm giving each of you a Lifetime Academy Membership."
FROM Editor: "For those of you that have stayed with us this far, Thanks. You inspire us to keep working on this labor of love. We know that we have a lot more to do. Ultimately, we hope that we can help you enjoy the wonder filled world of boating as much as we do. We are all waiting to see what you have to say about this webpage article. And we assure you, your corrections, updates, additions and suggestions are welcomed. Let's work together on this." ♥
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