The American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) has forwarded to its field surveyors worldwide survey instructions relating to the enforcement provisions of the 1978 Protocol to the 1974 International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS). Copies of these instructions also have been given to owners of all vessels in ABS classification.
Under the provisions of the '78 Protocol, c o n t r a c t i n g countries have elected to require mandatory annual surveys rather than u n s c h e d u l e d surveys, though some countries maintain the right to require both. The mandatory annual survey includes requirements covered separately in the Safety Construction and Safety Equipment Surveys specified in SOLAS '74, as well as other items usually reserved to port state inspections.
The annual survey will also cover items required for the International Oil Pollution Prevention Certificate under terms of the International Conference on Marine Pollution 1974 (MARPOL) and its 1978 Protocol when that convention comes into force.
ABS is authorized by many governments to conduct surveys and issue certificates in accordance with SOLAS '74, as well as for other international conventions.
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