Class and Statutory News

Ship in Service – Oil residue (sludge) tanks connection

11.28.16

Amendments to regulation 12 of MARPOL Annex I (MEPC.266(68)) - Retroactive application

Convention : MARPOL Annex I Oil Pollution

Flag :ALL FLAGS

Ship type :ALL TYPES

Amendments to regulation 12 of MARPOL Annex I, as adopted at MEPC 68 by resolution MEPC.266(68) will enter into force on 1 January 2017.
 

1. Ships of 400 gross tonnage and above, constructed before 1 January 2017 shall be arranged to comply with the following provisions not later than the first renewal survey carried out on or after 1 January 2017 (New MARPOL Annex I Reg. 12.3.3) :

Oil residue (sludge) tank(s) shall be provided and have no discharge connections to the bilge system, oily bilge water holding tank(s), tank top or oily water separators, except that:

  1. the tank(s) may be fitted with drains, with manually operated self-closing valves and arrangements for subsequent visual monitoring of the settled water, that lead to an oily bilge water holding tank or bilge well, or an alternative arrangement, provided such arrangement does not connect directly to the bilge discharge piping system; and
  2. the sludge tank discharge piping and bilge-water piping may be connected to a common piping leading to the standard discharge connection referred to in regulation 13; the connection of both systems to the possible common piping leading to the standard discharge connection (referred to in regulation 13) shall not allow for the transfer of sludge to the bilge system;

2. IMO Unified Interpretation - No discharge connection

The IMO MEPC 70 approved the revised Unified Interpretations of regulation 12 of MARPOL Annex I (MEPC.1/Circ.868) including a UI regarding reg. 12.3.3 : 
A screw-down non-return valve, arranged in lines connecting to common piping leading to the standard discharge connection required by regulation 13, provides an acceptable means to prevent sludge from being transferred or discharged to the bilge system, oily bilge water holding tank(s), tank top or oily water separators. 
Refer to example of acceptable arrangement (extract from IACS Rec121)

3. Therefore interconnection or transfer arrangement between Oil residue (sludge) system and bilge system, oily bilge water holding tank(s), tank top or oily water separators not complying with the provisions of new MARPOL Annex I Reg. 12.3.3, shall be modified in due course, and :

  • Modified drawing shall be submitted for review and re-approval,
  • Compliance will be verified onboard by BV Surveyor at the occasion of the first renewal survey carried out on or after 1 January 2017
  • An occasional survey (prior to first renewal survey carried out on or after 1 January 2017) may be carried out before, upon owner's request, in order to verify onboard the compliance. 
  • Owners / managers shall ensure that their vessels are in compliance with the above regulations in due course.

Example of acceptable arrangement (extract from IACS Rec121)

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