BAHAMAS - Maintenance of lifeboat falls
Convention : SOLAS CH III Life-Saving Appliances
Ship type :ALL TYPESThe amended Reg III/20.4 removes the requirement for turning wires end-for-end in favour of periodical examination of the fall wires.
It does not prohibit turning of wires end-for-end and if Owners choose to do this then special attention must be paid to the method of joining and terminating wires. The Bahamas Maritime Authority (BMA) recognises that there are a number of alternative methods that can be used to form these terminations and that the suitability of each type of connection for the intended service is varied. Managers shall ensure the correct method of joining and terminating the wires taking into consideration any design or manufacturers’ requirements.
1. The amendment to SOLAS III/20.4, as set out in IMO Resolution MSC 216(82) requires that the falls used in launching are to be inspected periodically (i.e. at least annually) with special regard for areas passing through sheaves.
2. This acceptance of the periodic inspection is on the basis that the falls will be renewed when necessary due to deterioration of the falls or at intervals of not more than 5 years, whichever is earlier.
3. The periodic inspection shall be carried out by competent persons1 within the window before, or at the time of, the Safety Equipment survey.
Requirements for Periodic Inspections
The periodic inspection of every wire shall at least comply with the following specification:
i. The survival craft must be lowered to the water, or the wire otherwise paid out, such that the wire bears no weight and there is no more than one layer left on the drum. The wire shall then be cleaned to facilitate a general inspection of its condition.
ii. The stationary parts of the wire, i.e. parts resting on or within sheaves and locking devices, must be given particularly close attention during that inspection.
iii. Once the wire is clean it must be verified as free from corrosion and that grease had penetrated the whole wire.
iv. After satisfactory inspection an approved type of grease shall be reapplied and the wire re-wound on the drum as recommended by the manufacturer.
Wires found with corrosion or deterioration to the extent that their strength is compromised must be replaced.
Stainless Steel Falls
Where no service life for marine use is indicated by the manufacturer, stainless steel falls are subject to the same requirements as for galvanised steel falls. Where the manufacturer’s stated service life for marine use exceeds five years the wire may be retained in use for the stated period subject to being turned ‘end for end’ as specified by the manufacturers and to periodic inspections as set out above.
Instructions, maintenance and record keeping shall be implemented through the ship's instructions for on-board maintenance of life saving appliances or a planned maintenance system which meets the requirements of SOLAS Chapter III.
Records must clearly state that the annual periodical inspection has been carried out and the results of the examination. If end-for-end turning of wires has been carried out this should also be recorded. The renewal of falls at the required intervals (according to the maintenance procedure adopted) must be included. These records must be verified by the surveyor attending for the Safety Equipment Survey.