Maintenance and Inspection of Fire protection systems and Appliances

Maintenance, testing and inspections for fire protection systems as well as fire-fighting systems and appliances are required in accordance with SOLAS Chapter II-2/14.2.2 as quoted below.

  • 2.2 Maintenance, testing and inspections
  • 2.2.1 Maintenance, testing and inspections shall be carried out based on the guidelines developed by the Organization (Refer to MSC.1/Circ.1432 as amended, including the amendments by MSC.1/Circ.1516) and in a manner having due regard to ensuring the reliability of fire-fighting systems and appliances.
  • 2.2.2 The maintenance plan shall be kept on board the ship and shall be available for inspection whenever required by the Administration.

The above maintenance plan onboard is to be prepared based on the instructions given by the flag administration as well as MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516 as amended. Maintenance, testing and inspections of fire protection systems and fire-fighting systems as well as appliances are to be implemented based on the above plan.

In this connection, Table-1 gives an overview of maintenance, testing and inspections for main fire-fighting systems based on MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516, as amended, as well as other applicable reference guidelines, while Table-2 summarizes instructions from different flag State Administrations.

ClassNK surveyors confirm that the maintenance, testing and inspections of fire protection systems as well as fire-fighting systems and appliances on board ship are carried out as part of the safety equipment survey, in accordance with the maintenance plan based on Flag Administration instructions.

Remarks
In principle, the inspection interval for new built ships carried out by shipyard staff or crew starts from delivery of a vessel, while inspections for such things as replaced items or hydrostatic tests starts from either the date when such an inspection was last carried out or from the date of manufacture. In case there are related instructions by administrations, the instruction should be followed.
ClassNK views MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516, as amended, as minimum guidelines on which such inspection are to be based, In case there are any instructions by the manufacture, those instruction are to be followed, as well.

For any questions about the above, please contact:

NIPPON KAIJI KYOKAI (ClassNK)
Survey Department, Administration Center, Head Office

Address: 3-3 Kioi-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-0094, Japan
Tel.: +81-3-5226-2027
Fax: +81-3-5226-2029
email: svd@classnk.or.jp
Table-1 Overview of maintenance, testing and inspections of main fire-fighting systems based on MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516 as amended, as well as other relevant guidelines.
Equipment Interval Outline of Requirement Guideline
Portable fire extinguishers Annually Inspections in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, etc. Res.A.951(23), para.9.1
5-yearly Discharged as part of fire drills, etc. Res.A.951(23), para.9.1.1
10-yearly Hydrostatic test Res.A.951(23), para.9.1.2
Wheeled (mobile) fire extinguishers Monthly Verification in place, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.5.9
Annually Inspections in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.7.12
5-yearly Visual inspection, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.9.6
10-yearly Hydrostatic test MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.10.5
Portable foam applicator units Monthly Inspections in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.5.8
Annually foam control test, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.7.11
Fixed CO2 fire-extinguishing systems Monthly Verification of each part, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1318, para.4
Annually Visual inspection, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1318, para.5
2.5-yearly Verification of contents, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1318, para.6.1
5-yearly Operation test, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1318, para.6.2
10-yearly Hydrostatic test, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1318, para.6.1
Fixed dry chemical powder systems Monthly Verification of valves and gauges, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.5.6
Annually Visual inspection, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.7.9
2-yearly Testing a sample of dry chemical powder, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.8.2
10-yearly Hydrostatic test or Non-destructive test MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.10.3
Fixed foam fire-extinguishing systems Monthly Verification of valves and gauges, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.5.3
Quarterly Verification of quantity of foam concentrate MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.6.2
Annually Functional test, and taking sample, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.7.4
5-yearly Inspection of each part MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.9.2
SCBAs Weekly Examination of cylinder gauges MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.4.5
Annually Checking of serviceable condition, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.7.8.2
5-yearly Hydrostatic test MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.9.4
EEBD Weekly Examination of cylinder gauges MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.4.5
Annually Inspections in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.7.8.3
--- Hydrostatic test IACS Rec.88
Water mist, water spray and sprinkler systems Weekly Visual inspection, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.4.7
Monthly Verification of valves and gauges, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.5.4
Quarterly Assessment of system water quality MSC.1/Circ.1516, para 6.5
Annually Blowing air, blowing water test, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1516, para 7.5
5-yearly Internal inspection of all control/section valves, etc. MSC.1/Circ.1516, para 9.3
10-yearly Hydrostatic test for gas and water pressure cylinders. MSC.1/Circ.1432, para.10.2
Table-2 Instructions from Flag State Administrations
Flag Instruction Updated date Remarks
Antigua & Barbuda CIRCULAR 2012-011 Oct. 2012 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Australia Marine Order 15 21 May 2014 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Bahamas INFORMATION BULLETIN No.97 13 Feb. 2015 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Bahrain Directive No.SOLAS/12 29 Dec. 2016 Special instruction.
Bermuda BERMUDA SHIPPING NOTICE 2017-021 08 Feb. 2017 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516.
BERMUDA SHIPPING NOTICE 2015-027 06 Jan. 2015 (Additional instruction for fixed CO2 fire extinguishing system and portable fire extinguishers.)
BERMUDA SHIPPING NOTICE 2015-028 06 Jan. 2015  
Cayman Islands SHIPPING NOTICE 01/2014 16 Jan. 2014 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Cook Islands Circular 55/2013 10 Apr. 2015 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Cyprus Circular No. 14/2013 30 May 2013 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Dominica CD-MSC 33-01 Rev01 18 Apr. 2008 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.850.
Gibraltar Shipping Guidance Notice-046
01 Oct. 2013 MSC.1/Circ.1432 is referred.
Shipping Guidance Notice-028 Dec. 2011 Special instruction for SCBA cylinder and portable/fixed fire-fighting systems.
Hong Kong Merchant Shipping Information Note (MSIN) No.14/2016 18 Jan. 2016 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516.
Isle of Man Isle of Man Ship Registry Manx Shipping Notice 057 18 Jan. 2016 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516.
Japan Applied our rule part R 14.2.2. 30 June 2016 To be based on MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516.
Kiribati Marine Circular 16/2012 06 Mar. 2012 Special instruction.
Liberia FIR-001 Rev.6/12 01 Jun. 2012 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.850.
Malaysia MSN 11/2009 03 Sep. 2009 Special instruction.
Malta Technical Notice SLS.6 Rev.3 11 Sep. 2015 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516.
Marshall Islands Marine Notice No.2-011-14 Rev. June/2016 Jun. 2016 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516.
Myanmar Directive (5/2016) 21 Nov. 2016 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432 and SS3656 for portable fire extinguishers.
Oman B09
B10
  Special instruction.
Panama Merchant Marine Circular No.281 21 Jan. 2013 Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Singapore SHIPPING CIRCULAR TO SHIPOWNERS NO. 19 OF 2013
26 Sep. 2013 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
SURVEY CIRCULAR 3 OF 2014 05 Mar. 2014 (Additional instruction for fixed CO2 fire extinguishing system.)
Switzerland Circular No CH50   Special instruction referring to MSC.1/Circ.1432.
Swiss Maritime Navigation Office SMNO 01 Nov. 2016
Tuvalu MC-7/2011/1 Jun. 2018 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432 and MSC.1/Circ.1516.
MC-17/2011/1 Apr. 2018 Instruction for systems using halons and other ozone depleting substances.
UK Instructions for the Guidance of Surveyors - Fire protection arrangement (MSIS 12) - Special instruction.
UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency -
MGN 258 (M+F) Jul. 2003
MGN 276 (M+F) Jun. 2004
MGN 355(M) Nov. 2007
MGN 374 (M+F) Aug. 2008
USA The CFRs are mandatory while MSC.1/Circ.1432 is a guideline that provides just the minimum level of maintenance. - MSC.1/Circ.1432 is guidelines and provides just the minimum level of maintenance.
Vanuatu FLEET / SAFETY LETTER 2016-May-25 25 May 2016 Special instruction.
Vietnam Technical Information 023TI.E/12TB 20 July 2012 Reference made to MSC.1/Circ.1432.