NMSC Extend Small craft standard’s public comment period

Small craft standard’s public comment period extended

The National Marine Safety Committee (NMSC) last week announced that the draft revised standard for AS1799.1 Small Craft – General Requirements for Power Boats had been released by Standards Australia and is now available for public comment.

Industry has since requested an extension to the public comment period because of shutdowns over the summer season.  

NMSC’s Acting CEO John Henry today announced that he agrees that the dates originally proposed by Standards Australia for the comment period are inadequate and stated that NMSC has taken the decision to continue to accept comment on behalf of Standards Australia up until 1 March 2009.  

In response to queries regarding potential costs to the industry in times of economic downturn, Mr Henry stressed that the draft standard simply proposes an update of an existing technical standard and nobody is suggesting any additional regulation.  

“AS 1799.1 is a publication of Standards Australia Ltd that is voluntary by nature – it is used by many local builders when determining information to go onto an Australian Builders Plate (ABP) but boat builders can use any recognised national or international standard they choose for the ABP,” he said.

“Unfortunately, the current edition of AS 1799.1 has not been revised since 1992 and has become out of date in a number of areas, like the masses of outboard motors and the maximum horsepower that a tiller steered outboard can safely handle.  

“Last year NMSC took the decision to provide some resources to Standards Australia so that a revision could take place in accordance with Standards Australia’s new business model.

“This is one of the first standards to be revised under Standards Australia’s new model and a few teething problems – such as the dates for the comment period – have arisen, “ he added, “however, NMSC remains committed to the need for a more up-to-date and relevant Australian Standard and we will work with Standards Australia to resolve any issues with the process as they arise”.   

Have your say
The draft standard for AS 1799.1 Small Craft – General Requirements for Power Boats can be obtained directly from Standards Australia’s publisher SAI Global via the website: www.standards.org.au, click on Drafts for Public Comment and follow leads to document reference DR 08224.

If you encounter difficulties obtaining a copy please feel free to contact the NMSC Secretariat by emailing secretariat@nmsc.gov.au or phoning 02 9247 2124. Comment can be emailed direct to jhenry@nmsc.gov.au or returned to the NMSC Secretariat

Comments now close on 1 March 2009.
The NMSC aims to achieve nationally uniform marine safety practices and is made up of the CEOs of Australia’s marine safety agencies.