Standards regarding watch-keeping
Fitness for duty
Administrations shall take account of the danger posed by fatigue of seafarers,
especially those whose duties involve the safe and secure operation of a ship.
(Go to Exception Clause)
All persons who are assigned
duty as officer in charge of a watch or as a rating forming part of a watch
those whose duties involve designated safety, prevention of pollution and
security duties shall be
provided with a rest period of not less than:
1 a minimum of 10 hours of rest in any 24-hour
77 hours in
any 7-day period.
The hours of
rest may be divided into no more than two periods, one of which shall be at
least 6 hours in length, and the intervals between consecutive periods of rest
shall not exceed 14 hours.
for rest periods laid down in paragraphs 2 and 3 need not be maintained in the
case of an emergency or in other overriding operational conditions. Musters,
fire-fighting and lifeboat drills, and drills prescribed by national laws and
regulations and by international instruments, shall be conducted in a manner
that minimizes the disturbance of rest periods and does not induce fatigue.
Administrations shall require that watch schedules be posted where they are
easily accessible. The schedules shall be established in a standardized format*
in the working language or languages of the ship and in English.
When a seafarer is on call, such as when a machinery space is unattended, the
seafarer shall have an adequate compensatory rest period if the normal period of
rest is disturbed by call-outs to work.
that records of daily hours of rest of seafarers be maintained in a standardized
in the working language or languages of the ship and in English,
allow monitoring and verification of compliance with the provisions of this
section. The seafarers shall receive a copy of the records pertaining to them,
which shall be endorsed by the master or by a person authorized by the master
and by the seafarers.
support is now available)
Nothing in this
section shall be deemed to impair the right of the master of a ship to require a
seafarer to perform any hours of work necessary for the immediate safety of the
ship, persons on board or cargo, or for the purpose of giving assistance to
other ships or persons in distress at sea.
the master may suspend the schedule of hours of rest and require a seafarer to
perform any hours of work necessary until the normal situation has been
restored. As soon as practicable after the normal situation has been
restored, the master shall ensure that any seafarers who have performed work in
a scheduled rest period are provided with an adequate period of rest
* The IMO/ILO
Guidelines for the development of tables of seafarers’ shipboard working
formats of records of seafarers’ hours of work or hours of rest
may be used.
Parties may allow exceptions from the required hours of rest in
paragraphs 2.2 and 3 above provided that the rest period is not less than 70
hours in any 7-day period. Exceptions from the weekly rest period provided
for in paragraph 2.2 shall not be allowed for more than two consecutive weeks.
The intervals between two periods of exceptions on board shall not be less than
twice the duration of the exception.
The hours of rest
provided for in paragraph 2.1 may be divided into no more than three periods,
one of which shall be at least 6 hours in length and neither of the other two
periods shall be less than one hour in length. The intervals between consecutive
periods of rest shall not exceed 14 hours. Exceptions shall not extend
beyond two 24-hour periods in any 7-day period.
as far as possible, take into account the guidance regarding prevention of
Each Administration shall establish, for the purpose of preventing alcohol
abuse, a limit of not greater than 0.05% blood alcohol level (BAC) or 0.25 mg/l
alcohol in the breath or a quantity of alcohol leading to such alcohol
concentration for masters, officers and other seafarers while performing
designated safety, security and marine environmental duties.
It must be noted that a ship may
be detained if conditions are violated.
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