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The Standard Marine Communication Phrases (SMCP) - 2001

As navigational and safety communications from ship to shore and vice versa, ship to ship , and on board ships  must be precise, simple and unambiguous, so as to avoid confusion and error, there is a need to standardize the language used. This is of particular importance in the light of the increasing number of internationally trading vessels with crews speaking many different languages since problems of communication may cause misunderstandings leading to dangers to the vessel, the people on board and the environment.

In 1973 the IMO Maritime Safety Committee agreed at its twenty-seventh session that, where language difficulties arise, a common language should be used for navigational purposes and that language should be English. In consequence the Standard Marine Navigational Vocabulary (SMNV) was developed, adopted in 1977 and amended in 1985.

In 1992 the IMO Maritime Safety Committee at its sixtieth session instructed the IMO Sub-Committee on Safety of Navigation to develop a more comprehensive standardized safety language than the SMNV, 1985, taking into account the changing conditions in modern seafaring and covering all major safety‑related verbal communications.

At its sixty-eighth session in 1997 the IMO Maritime Safety Committee adopted the Draft Standard Marine Communication Phrases (SMCP) developed by the IMO Sub-Committee on Safety of Navigation. The Draft SMCP, following international trials, was amended at the forty-sixth session of this Sub-Committee and final consideration given at the IMO Maritime Safety Committee at its 32nd session  in the light of remarks received by the Organization. The SMCP was adopted by the IMO Assembly in November 2001 as resolution A.918(22) .

Under the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978, as revised 1995, the ability to understand and use the SMCP is required for the certification of officers in charge of a navigational watch on ships of 500 gross tonnage or more.

(Foreword, SMCP 2001)

Should you need a downloadable version of the SMCP 2001, please click here.



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Última actualización: miércoles, 20 de octubre de 2004