IACS IMO Life Saving Appliances Surveyors

Monthly inspections of immersion suits are required for specific flag States administrations

ClassNK informs that monthly inspections of immersion suits / anti-exposure
suits are now required to the vessels flagged with Singapore, Hong Kong, Greece and India and advises on the appropriate items that operators should check during inspections.

As informed, Singapore, Greece, India and Hong Kong flagged vessels should follow IMO Circular MSC/Circ.1047 “Guidelines for monthly shipboard inspection of immersion suits and anti-exposure suits by ships’ crews” should be incorporated into the checklist of instructions for on-board maintenance prescribed in SOLAS regulation III/36.1, and the monthly inspection of immersion suits / anti-exposure suits should be carried out in accordance with SOLAS regulation III/20.7.

Items for checks

  • Check closures on storage bag as well as general condition of bag for ease of removal of suit. Ensure donning instructions are legible. Confirm that suit is the type and size identified on thebag.
  • Lay the suit on a clean, flat surface. Make sure the suit is dry inside and out. Visually check for damage. Rips, tears or punctures should be repaired in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions by a suitable repair station (which is one authorized by the suit manufacturer and acceptable to the Administration).
  • Check the zipper by sliding it up and down to check for ease of operation. Using lubricant recommended by the manufacturer, lubricate the front and back of the zipper and the slide fastener. If the zipper is not functional, the suit should be removed from service and discarded or returned to the manufacturer or a suitable repair station.
  • If fitted, check inflatable head support and/or buoyancy ring for damage and ensure that it is properly attached. Check inflation hose(s) for deterioration. At least quarterly, the head support/buoyancy ring should be inflated and tested for leaks (this test does not apply to integral inflatable lifejackets). Leaks should be repaired in accordance with manufacturers’ instructions by a suitable repair station.
  • Check retro reflective tape for condition and adhesion. Replace if necessary.
  • If fitted, check whistle and expiration date of light and battery
  • Replace suits in the bag with zippers fully opened.
  • The opportunity should be taken at such monthly inspections for the crew to practice donning the immersion suits or anti-exposure suits.

Additionally, ClassNK says it has been informed by the India Government of issues regarding air pressure test of immersion suit on board India Flagged Vessels. According to the information, the air pressure test may be carried out by trained ship’s crews on board the ship subject to the several conditions required by the India Government.

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