7. Bilge Systems

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7.1 Every ship should be equipped with an efficient self priming bilge pumping system consisting of at least:

  1. For ships of length less than 20 m - one hand bilge pump having a minimum capacity of 1 m3/hr and one engine driven or independent, fixed power bilge pump having a minimum capacity of 5 m3/hr ;
  2. For ships having length of 20 m and over - two fixed power driven pumps having combined minimum capacity of 10 m3/hr .

7.2 Pumps and piping should be so arranged that any compartment can be drained and that the overhaul of a pump should be possible without putting other bilge pumps out of action.

7.3 For an existing ship which can not meet the requirements given in 7.1 and 7.2 consideration may be given to alternative arrangements to achieve an adequate safety standard.

7.4 Portable pumps should not weigh more than 20 Kg .

7.5 Spaces connected to a permanently installed bilge system should be provided with suctions positioned so as to permit removal of flood water when the ship is heeled to 15 degrees in either direction.

7.6 Bilge pumps connected, or capable of being connected to the bilge system should be capable of efficient operation with the ship heeled to 30 degrees in either direction.

7.7 Permanently installed bilge piping should be arranged so as to prevent the transfer of flood water from one compartment to another.

7.8 All bilge piping should be smooth bore and not less than 25 mm in diametre; suctions should be through strum boxes.

7.9 Portable pumps, their power supply and hoses, should be stowed in clearly marked stowages, secured with quick-release fastenings.

7.10 All bilge suction valves and pump discharge valves in new sail training ships should be of the screw down non return type. Bilge system pipes should be clearly marked as such, and any bilge suction valve controls should be clearly identified with the compartment served.

7.11 Through-hull bilge system discharges should be by way of non-return valves or a syphon valve at the through-hull fitting.

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