Lifeboat Legislation Change

Our Ref: HSR/2/6
Head Office Circular: NP/332/21
6th September 2021
To: The Secretary

Dear Colleague,


Further to Head Office Circular NP/240/21 (LIFEBOAT SAFETY), dated 6th July 2021, your National Executive Committee, at its meeting on 22nd June 2021, considered the following note of a Lifeboat Working Group meeting which took place on 1st September:

In attendance were: Danny McQuaid (Belfast), John Matthews (Belfast), Jake Molloy (Regional Organiser), Steve Smart (Regional Organiser), Jonathan Havard (H&S Officer) and Darren Procter (National Secretary).

• Following the survey of members, companies and flag states were written to as per the precious NEC decision. Three companies, Calmac, Maersk and RFA, have responded (attached as an appendix). Three others (P&O Cruises and BAS) have sent holding replies

• Branko Berlan and Jacqueline Smith (ITF) have been chased up regarding the offer to participate in and present the results of our survey to the Industry Group (consisting of members of IMO, NGOs, IGOs and some governments) which works on the Life Safety Equipment issue and, in particular, on lifeboat safety.

• RMT (DP/JH) met with the MCA on 18th August. The MCA agreed to assist in dialogue with the Cypriot and Bahamian flag states as part of a roundtable. RMT to write to members calling for evidence and facts before presenting to the MCA before meeting again in December.

• DP to liaise with the GS regarding potential RMT representation on the ITF Maritime Safety Committee

• All companies with whom RMT wrote to as per the first bullet point to be contacted again, requesting a response if one has not yet been received, and noting that RMT will be advising members of their rights under the Employment Relations Act (ERA) 1996.

• A poster campaign to raise awareness of our campaign and establishing protective measures for our members who do not feel comfortable with the launching procedures onboard their respective vessels including the use of Section 44 of the ERA to be developed in conjunction with RMT’s Comms Department

Your NEC resolved as follows:

That we note the report of our Lifeboat Working Group meeting which took place yesterday 01/09/21 and the Action points raised, We also note that further to the NECs previous decision three companies Calmac, Mearsk, and RFA have responded with P&O Cruises and BAS have sent holding replies. Therefore we instruct the General secretary to issue a circular to all Shipping Branches and Regional Councils outlining the progress made to date. All further reports to be placed back before this NEC.

I am acting in accordance with these instructions.

Please bring the contents of this circular to the attention of relevant members.

Yours sincerely

Michael Lynch
General Secretary