ABP Standard consultation
About the ABP Standard
The ABP Standard was first published in 2005 and was introduced in response to public demand for recreational boat safety with the support of Australian boat builders. The Standard seeks to enhance the safety of people on recreational boats by ensuring that certain boats are fitted with an Australian Builders Plates (ABP).
The ABP Standard specifies that some of the information displayed, such as maximum loading masses, are calculated in accordance with specified technical standards. This aims to ensure that a boat has adequate volume and capacity to safely support the recommended loading and passengers listed on the ABP.
Declaring that a boat complies with the ABP Standard is a declaration by the builder or importer that the boat meets, to the extent specified within the Standard, the requirements of the relevant national or international standards applicable to recreational boats.
Reviewing the Standard
Marine Safety agencies around Australia have reviewed the accuracy and consistency of the ABP Standard as it is applied throughout Australia.
Incorrect calculations regarding maximum loading limits can pose a safety risk as a boat operator may exceed the vessel’s physical capability whilst remaining within the limits specified on the boat’s ABP. Overloading a vessel significantly increases the risk of it sinking, swamping or capsizing, with associated injuries and fatalities.
Significant inroads have been taken by industry to address any inconsistencies or incorrect methods of calculation identified.
The Australian Recreational Boating Safety Committee (ARBSC) acknowledges that the vast majority of boat manufacturers have attempted to comply with ABP requirements, but many have not sufficiently understood the methods or details as prescribed by the ABP Standard.
Public consultation now open
With the intention of improving safety outcomes, a new ABP Standard has been proposed and public feedback is now sought. Maritime Safety Queensland is hosting the consultation on behalf of the Australian Recreational Boating Safety Committee.
Key changes proposed include:
- further guidance for boat builders regarding how ABP values are determined;
- requiring flotation to be fitted in accordance with nominated technical standards;
- making the “operational warning statement” a mandatory inclusion on the ABP; and
- generally restructuring the ABP Standard to improve safety outcomes and ease-of-use.
To comment on the proposed ABP Standard changes and for more information, please visit the Maritime Safety Queensland site. Consultation closes 31 January 2020.
|ABP Standard Consultation - Maritime Safety Queensland|