Home » Maritime » Coast Guard revises sailing rules during storm signal no 1

THE Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) is again revising guidelines on the movement of vessels during inclement weather.

PCG commandant Admiral Wilfredo Tamayo said the revision will now allow vessels to sail under storm signal number 1 provided certain conditions are met.

The current policy prohibits sailing of vessels 1,000 gross tons and below during storm signal number 1 except when they are taking shelter. Under the same storm signal, the movement of vessels above 1,000 gross tons is left to the discretion of the ship owner and master.

Tamayo said he has received complaints that vessels are not allowed to sail even during clear weather simply because storm signal number 1 has already been raised. “We made an assessment and we found out that the ship sail guidelines during typhoons become prejudicial to trade and commerce, especially for areas not affected by typhoons,” he said.

Under the revised guidelines, vessels may sail under storm signal number 1 but only during calm weather or in sheltered areas; if the line of sight is clear and navigation is during daytime; and if the ship has adequate communication devices.

Shipowners are also required to maintain constant communication with their vessel until it reaches its port of destination. Also required is a standby vessel that will serve as a lookout and which is readily available for assistance in times of emergency.

During storm signal number 2, vessels regardless of size remains barred from sailing except to seek shelter, but they should be without passenger and its cargo properly stowed.

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