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Mandatory Requirement for Reporting of Marine Incidents to Hong Kong Marine Department

(I) For all Hong Kong registered ships : -

Section 80 of the Merchant Shipping (Safety) Ordinance (Cap. 369)

(1) Where any of the following casualties has occurred-

(a) the loss or presumed loss, stranding, grounding, abandonment of or damage to a ship;

(b) a loss of life or serious personal injury caused by fire on board or by any accident to a ship or a ship's boat, or by any accident occurring on board a ship or ship's boat; or

(c) any damage caused by a ship, and, at the time it occurred, the ship was registered in Hong Kong, the owner or master of the ship shall, as soon as practicable, and in any case not later than 24 hours after the ship's arrival at the next port, submit to the Director a written report of the accident or damage.


(2) The report referred to in subsection (1) shall-

(a) give a brief description of the accident or damage;

(b) state the time and place where it occurred;

(c) state the name of the ship and its official number, its position at the time of the report and the next port of call; and

(d) give the particulars of any other ship involved in the accident.

(3) If the owner or master of a ship fails without reasonable excuse to comply with this section he commits an offence and is liable to a fine of $10000.

Section 11 of the Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) (Safety Officials and Reporting of Accidents and Dangerous Occurrences) Regulation (Cap. 478R)

(1) Subject to subsection (2), the following shall be notifiable in accordance with section 12 if they occur on board a ship or during access-
  (a) every accident to a person employed or carried on a ship which results in-
    (i) the death of the person;
    (ii) the person being incapacitated for work for any period; or
    (iii) such impairment of the person's physical condition that the person is put ashore and the ship sails without him;
  (b) every dangerous occurrence (Note 1).


(2) In respect of any ship, an accident or dangerous occurrence involving a person employed as a stevedore, ship builder, ship repairer or diver shall only be notifiable under this section if-
  (a) the person is a member of the crew of the ship; or
  (b) the accident or dangerous occurrence involved a failure of the ship's equipment.

Section 12 of the Merchant Shipping (Seafarers) (Safety Officials and Reporting of Accidents and Dangerous Occurrences) Regulation (Cap. 478R)

(1) The following provisions of this section shall apply whenever an accident or dangerous occurrence which is notifiable under section 11 occurs on board a ship or during access.
(2) In the event of an accident-
  (a) the master, or if he is not available, the most senior officer available, shall report to the Superintendent2 as soon as possible and not later than-
    (i) 24 hours after the accident if the ship is within the waters of Hong Kong at the time of the accident; or
    (ii) 24 hours after the ship arrives at its next port of call if the ship is not within the waters of Hong Kong at the time of the accident; and
  (b) every such report shall include the name and official number of the ship, its position at the time of the accident, the number of people involved in the accident, the injuries suffered, details of any damage to the ship or its equipment, any previous defect in its equipment, and, if the ship is at sea at the time of the accident, its next port of call and estimated date and time of arrival.
(3) In the event of an accident or dangerous occurrence-
  (a) if the ship carries a safety officer the master, or, if he is not available, the most senior officer available shall, whether or not a report is made under subsection (2), complete and sign a report in the prescribed form, and forward it to the Superintendent (Note 2) within 7 days of the date of the accident or dangerous occurrence or, if the ship is at sea at that date, within 7 days of arrival at its next port of call;
  (b) if the ship does not carry a safety officer, the employer shall, whether or not a report is made under subsection (2)-
    (i) require the master or most senior officer available, or, if the accident or dangerous occurrence occurs while the ship is in port, the owner's representative ashore responsible for safety, to-
      (A) investigate the accident or dangerous occurrence;
      (B) complete and sign a report in the prescribed form; and
      (C) forward the report to the Superintendent within the time prescribed in paragraph (a); and
    (ii) require the master, or the owner's representative ashore responsible for safety, to record in writing-
      (A) the circumstances and details of the accident or dangerous occurrence (including the date, the persons involved and the nature of the injuries suffered);
      (B) all statements made by witnesses thereto; and
      (C) any recommendations to prevent future similar accidents or dangerous occurrences,
and the employer or owner, as the case may be, shall make any such record available to the Superintendent on request.

(II) For all vessels (except local vessels) in Hong Kong waters : -

Section 67 of the Shipping and Port Control Ordinance (Cap. 313)

(1) Where, within the waters of Hong Kong-
  (a) a vessel is involved in a collision with another vessel, a port facility or other property;
  (b) a vessel sinks or becomes stranded or disabled;
  (c) a person is killed or seriously injured on board a vessel as a result of an accident;
  (d) an explosion or fire occurs on board a vessel;
  (e) damage is caused by a vessel to a port facility or other property; or
  (f) a person, cargo or equipment is lost overboard from a vessel,
  the owner or his agent or the master of the vessel shall report the occurrence forthwith to the Director orally, by means of signals, or in writing and shall furnish to the Director in writing full particulars thereof within 24 hours after the occurrence.
(2) An owner, agent or master of a vessel who-
  (a) without reasonable excuse fails to comply with subsection (1); or
  (b) makes a report or furnishes any particulars under subsection (1) which he knows to be false in any material particular, commits an offence and is liable to a fine of $10000.
(3) For the purposes of subsection (1)(c) a person shall be deemed to be seriously injured if he is admitted to a hospital immediately after he sustains the injury for observation or treatment.

Section 67 of the Shipping and Port Control (Works (Note 3)) Regulation (Cap. 313X)

(1) Where -
  (a) a person is seriously injured or killed in the course of works or in an incident arising out of works;
  (b) a crane, winch, hoist, derrick or other appliance collapses or fails (other than breakage of a chain or rope sling) in the course of works or in an incident arising out of works; or
  (c) a person, cargo or equipment is lost overboard from a vessel in the course of works or in an incident arising out of works,
  the person in charge of works shall take the action described in subsection (2).
(2) The person in charge of works (Note 4)shall
  (a) immediately report the occurrence to the Director orally, by means of signals, or in writing; and
  (b) furnish to the Director in writing with full particulars of the occurrence within 24 hours after the occurrence.
(3) For the purposes of subsection (1)(a), a person is regarded as being seriously injured if the nature of the injury is such that it requires admission to a hospital for observation or treatment immediately after the injury is sustained.
(4) A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (1) commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 3.

Section 16 of the Pilotage Ordinance (Cap. 84)

(1) A licensed pilot shall, when an accident occurs while a ship is being piloted by him, report the accident to the Authority (Note 5), orally forthwith and in writing within 24 hours.
(2) Any person who contravenes subsection (1) shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine of $2000.

(III) For all Local Vessels (Note 6) : -

Section 57 of the Merchant Shipping (Local Vessels) Ordinance (Cap. 548)

(1) Where, within the waters of Hong Kong or elsewhere -
  (a) a local vessel is involved in a collision with another vessel, a port facility or other property;
  (b) a local vessel sinks or becomes stranded or disabled;
  (c) a person is killed or seriously injured on board a local vessel as a result of an accident;
  (d) an explosion or fire occurs on board a local vessel;
  (e) damage is caused by a local vessel to a port facility or other property; or
  (f) a person, cargo or equipment is lost overboard from a local vessel,
  the owner of the vessel, his agent or the coxswain shall report the occurrence forthwith to the Director orally, by means of signals, or in writing and shall furnish to the Director in writing full particulars thereof within 24 hours after the occurrence.
(2) The owner of a local vessel, his agent or the coxswain who-
  (a) without reasonable excuse fails to comply with subsection (1); or
  (b) makes a report or furnishes any particulars under subsection (1) which he knows to be false in any material particular,
  commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 3.
(3) For the purpose of subsection (1)(c), a person shall be deemed to be seriously injured if he is admitted to a hospital immediately after he sustains the injury for observation or treatment.

Section 68 of the Merchant Shipping (Local Vessels) (Works) Regulation (Cap. 548 I)

(1) Where -
  (a) a person is seriously injured or killed in the course of works or in an incident arising out of works;
  (b) a crane, winch, hoist, derrick or other appliance collapses or fails (other than breakage of a chain or rope sling) in the course of works or in an incident arising out of works; or
  (c) a person, cargo or equipment is lost overboard from a local vessel in the course of works or in an incident arising out of works,
  the person in charge of works shall take the action described in subsection (2).
(2) The person in charge of works shall
  (a) immediately report the occurrence to the Director orally, by means of signals, or in writing; and
  (b) furnish to the Director in writing with full particulars of the occurrence within 24 hours after the occurrence.
(3) For the purposes of subsection (1)(a), a person is regarded as being seriously injured if the nature of the injury is such that it requires admission to a hospital for observation or treatment immediately after the injury is sustained.
(4) A person who, without reasonable excuse, contravenes subsection (1) commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine at level 3.

(IV) Reports to be made in the event of a discharge or likely discharge

Regulation 31 of Merchant Shipping (Prevention of Oil Pollution) Regulations ( Cap. 413A)

(1) This regulation applies to -
  (a) all ships within 200 miles of Hong Kong;
  (b) all Hong Kong ships within 200 miles of the nearest land;
  (c) all Hong Kong oil tankers when fully or partly laden; and
  (d) all Hong Kong ships of 10000 GRT and above.
(2) The master of a ship to which this regulation applies shall maker reports in accordance with paragraphs (4) and (6) of this regulation whenever an incident involves any discharge or probable discharge of oil or oily mixtures as a result of damage to the ship or its equipment or for the purpose of securing the safety of the ship or saving life at sea. In assessing the probability of a discharge, the master shall take into account -
  (a) the nature of the damage, failure or breakdown of the ship, machinery or equipment;
  (b) sea and wind state and traffic density in the area at the time and place of the incident.
(3) The master may make a report in cases of -
  (a) any damage, failure or breakdown which affects the safety of ships, such as collision, grounding, fire, explosion, structural failure, flooding or cargo shifting; and
  (b) any failure or breakdown of machinery or equipment which results in the impairment of the safety of navigation, such as failure or breakdown of steering gear, propulsion plant, electrical generating system or essential shipborne navigational aids.
(4) (a) The master of a ship proceeding to enter the waters of Hong Kong shall make any report required by this regulation without delay, either directly through the owner or his agent, or through the coast radio station to the Director, not less than 12 hours prior to the expected arrival of the ship.
  (b) The master of a Hong Kong ship more than 200 miles from Hong Kong hall make any report so required without delay to the nearest coastal State or to the coastal State which he considers to be most at risk from the actual or potential effects of the incident.
(5) The master's initial report shall contain the following particulars-
  (a) name of ship, call sign, frequency or radio channel kept open;
  (b) date and time of incident;
  (c) position and extent of any pollution, including, if possible estimated amount and surface area of spill;
  (d) present position of ship (if different from (c));
  (e) if discharge is continuing, approximate rate of release;
  (f) wind direction and speed, and condition of current or tide affecting spill movement;
  (g) weather conditions and sea state in ship's present position;
  (h) type of oil discharged;
  (i) types and quantities of oils still on board and whether or not carried as cargo;
  (j) type of ship, size, nationality and port of registry;
  (k) ship's course, speed and destination, if proceeding on its way;
  (l) brief description of the incident, including damage sustained and the cause of any discharge;
  (m) ability to transfer cargo or ballast or bunkers;
  (n) any remedial action taken or intended to deal with any actual or potential pollution or to control the movement of the ship;
  (o) forecast of likely movement and effect of pollution with estimated timing; and
  (p) assistance which has been requested from or which has been provided by other ships or agencies
(6) Following the initial report the master shall make a further report to the authority referred to in paragraph (4), containing the following particulars -
  (a) position of ship at time of incident, if different from that at the time of the initial report;
  (b) estimate of the quantities, concentrations and likely conditions of oils -
    (i) discharged; and
    (ii) likely to be discharged,
    likely to be discharged,
  (c) ship's course, speed and destination at time of incident, if different from that at the time of the initial report;
  (d) all relevant information regarding the condition of the ship; and
  (e) telegraphic address of the ship's operator, charterer and nearest local agent.

Notes :

1. "dangerous occurrence" means any of the following occurrences, if not notified under this Regulation as an accident, shall be notifiable as a dangerous occurrence if, taking into account the circumstances, it could have caused damage to the health of any person, whether it did so or not-

  (a) the collapse or overturning of any lift, hoist, crane, davit, derrick, ramp, mobile powered platform, embarkation or disembarkation equipment, staging or bosun's chair;
  (b) the failure of any load-bearing part of any equipment listed in paragraph (a);
  (c) the explosion, collapse or bursting of any closed vessel, including a boiler or boiler tube, in which there was-
    (i) any gas (including air);
    (ii) any liquid; or
    (iii) any vapour at a pressure greater than atmospheric pressure;
  (d) an electrical short circuit or overload resulting in fire or explosion;
  (e) the sudden, uncontrolled release from any system, plant or pipeline of -
    (i) highly flammable liquid;
    (ii) flammable gas; or
    (iii) flammable liquid above its boiling point;
  (f) the uncontrolled release or escape of any harmful substance or agent;
  (g) either of the following occurrences in respect of any pipeline, valve or piping system in a ship -
    (i) the bursting, explosion or collapse of a pipeline or any part thereof excluding minor leaks in pipes carrying non-noxious substances; or
    (ii) the accidental ignition of anything in a pipeline or of anything which, immediately before it ignited, was in a pipeline;
  (h) any contact with loose asbestos fibre except when full protective clothing is being worn;
  (i) any collapse or significant movement of cargo;
  (j) the failure or collapse of any hatch cover or hatch cover control-wire or mechanism;
  (k) a fall overboard; or
  (l) the parting of a tow-rope.

2. "Superintendent" means the Superintendent of the Mercantile Marine Office

3. "works" means- (a) repairs to a vessel; (b) the breaking up of a vessel; (c) cargo handling; or (d) marine construction.

4.person in charge of works" means-

(a) the owner or master of, or other person having control over, a vessel on, to or by means of which any works are to be, or are being, carried out;
(b) a principal contractor or sub-contractor, if any, who contracts to carry out, or who carries out, any works; or
(c) any other person having for the time being the command or charge of any works being carried out on, to or by means of a vessel.

5."Authority" means the Pilotage Authority (i.e. the Director of Marine).

6."local vessel" means-

  (a) any vessel used solely within the waters of Hong Kong, whether registered under the Merchant Shipping (Registration) Ordinance (Cap 415) or in a place outside Hong Kong;
  (b) any vessel regularly employed in trading to or from Hong Kong unless registered in a place outside Hong Kong;
  (c) any vessel possessed or used for pleasure purposes in the waters of Hong Kong;
  (d) any vessel employed in sea fishing plying regularly in the waters of Hong Kong, or using the waters of Hong Kong as a base; or
  (e) any vessel-
    (i) registered in the Mainland of China or Macau;
    (ii) employed in trading to or from Hong Kong; and
    (iii) issued with any certificate by a government authority of the Mainland of China or Macau permitting its trading to Hong Kong other than any accepted convention certificate

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