Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Forty-Seventh Report



APPENDIX VII

Memorandum by the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions

MERCHANT SHIPPING (RADIO INSTALLATIONS) REGULATIONS 1998 (S.I. 1998/2070)

The Committee asked:

    (1)  Regulation 21 defines "radio operator" for the purposes of Part III. Explain the relevance of this definition. Is that expression used elsewhere in that Part and, if so, in what provision?

The expression "radio operator" is not used in Part III and the definition is accordingly unnecessary. The Department undertakes to correct this error at the first opportunity.

    (2)  In regulation 39(2) ought not the reference to the form in Part B of Schedule 5 to have read Part B of Schedule 6?

    (3)  In regulation 47(2) ought not the reference to the form in Part B of Schedule 6 to have read Part B of Schedule 7?

Yes (in both cases). The Department regrets these errors and undertakes to correct them at the first opportunity.

    (4)  Regulation 44(3)(a) provides that the reserve source of energy for radio installations "shall preferably" consist of batteries, provided that they are not fitted in the same space as the means for bringing the reserve source of energy into immediate operation. Breach of the requirements of the Regulations makes the ship liable to detention (regulation 49(1)) and is an offence (regulation 50(2)). Explain the purpose and effect of regulation 44(3)(a). Does that provision impose a requirement for the purposes of regulation 49(1), and is breach of that provision an offence under regulation 50(2)? If so, explain how it would be determined whether non-compliance of this requirement is a breach for those purposes.

The first part of regulation 44(3)(a) (the words before the comma) does not impose a requirement. The purpose of these words is to make it clear to ship owners and masters that the Secretary of State considers it preferable that the reserve source of energy consist of batteries. However, if the reserve source of energy does not consist of batteries this is not a breach of any requirement in the Regulations.

The second part of regulation 44(3)(a) does impose a requirement. If the reserve source of energy consists of batteries, those batteries shall not be fitted in the same space as the means for bringing the reserve source of energy into immediate operation (which space shall be provided in the radio telegraph operating room or, if this is not possible, close thereto: see regulation 44 (2)). Non-compliance with this aspect of the provision does constitute a breach of the Regulations for the purposes of regulations 49(1) and 50(2).

    (5)  Regulation 45(6)(a) provides that no certificate of competency shall be deemed to be valid on any date if granted more than 2 years before that date and "the holder's period, aggregate of periods", of experience on that date is less than 3 months. Is the aggregate of several periods intended to be an alternative to a single continuous period of 3 months?

Yes. The word "or" was omitted in error from before the words "aggregate of periods". The Department regrets this error and undertakes to correct it at the first opportunity.

2nd November 1998


 
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