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Shipping: Safety

Transport written question – answered on 21st May 2008.

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Photo of Alistair Carmichael Alistair Carmichael Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Northern Ireland)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress the Council of Ministers has made on a common framework for the permanent exclusion by member states of vessels in repeated breach of EU safety regulations.

Photo of Jim Fitzpatrick Jim Fitzpatrick Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

The UK already has a framework for restricting vessel access to UK ports which is set out in The Merchant Shipping (Port State Control) Regulations 1995 [SI 1995 No. 3128 as amended] and the associated Merchant Shipping Notice 1775 (M).

The original proposal of the recast of the EU Directive on Port State Control, one of the Third Maritime Safety Package proposals, included provisions to permanently ban vessels which have been detained for a third time following inspection at a Community port. The Council was not persuaded that a permanent ban was proportionate or legally enforceable. It considered that ships which have been banned under the terms of the directive should be allowed back into Community ports once stringent safety criteria, including a further inspection of the ship concerned, have been satisfied.

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