Regulation 34-1 - Master's Discretion


  • Master's discretion in decision-making not to be compromised.
Regulation 34-1
The owner, the charterer, the company operating the ship as defined in regulation IX/1, or any other person shall not prevent or restrict the master of the ship from taking or executing any decision which, in the master's professional judgement, is necessary for safety of life at sea and protection of the marine environment.
MCA Guidance

This regulation ensures the master has absolute discretion to take decisions in the interests of safety of life at sea and or protection of the marine environment.
The word "Company" is as defined in SOLAS Chapter IX/1 (ISM Code): "Company" meaning the owner of the ship or any other organization or person such as the manager, or the bareboat charterer, who has assumed the responsibility for operation of the ship and who on assuming such responsibility has agreed to take over all the duties and responsibilities imposed by the International Safety Management Code.


Regulation 34.1 replaces the paragraph on Master's Discretion originally contained in Regulation 34. The change came into force on 1 July 2006. [IMO Resolution MSC.153(78)]




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