AMSA update—October 2021

AMSA update

Have your say: lifejacket wear requirements on domestic commercial vessels

Consultation is open until 17 December 2021.

Since July 2013, 44 people on domestic commercial vessels have fallen overboard and drowned.

We are taking action to improve safety by proposing to make it mandatory to wear a lifejacket on certain domestic commercial vessels.

What we want to know

We are inviting feedback from industry on the following three options.

Option 1

Mandate lifejacket wear requirements on all domestic commercial vessels, at all times, when on deck.

Option 2

Mandate lifejacket wear at all times on:

  • vessels less than 7.5 m in length
  • vessels with only one person on board
  • fishing vessels of any length, when on deck
  • unpowered barges that do not have rails or means to prevent a person falling overboard.

 All domestic commercial vessel operators will also need to have a documented risk assessment and procedure on lifejacket wear in their safety management system.

 Option 3

Continue with lifejacket carriage requirements and do not introduce lifejacket wear requirements, however, all vessels must have a documented risk assessment and procedure on lifejacket wear safety management system.

What to expect next

We will use your valuable feedback to help develop a policy solution that is relevant and practical across the domestic commercial vessel industry.

Following the outcome of this consultation, if it is decided that lifejacket wear should be mandated, we will consult with industry again on proposed changes to the national law regulatory framework in the first half of 2022.

Go to to learn more and have your say.

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