Coronavirus – Mecal advice and updates

08.06.2020 MCA Update for owners-please click here

24.04.2020 MCA Update for owners – please click here

MCA update – 14 03 2020

I hope you are staying safe and healthy. We have received a reoccurring question with regards to extension of equipment maintenance and servicing requirements where a vessel does not have a short term certificate. Please see the clarification for this below.


What should a Certifying Authority do where a vessel does not require a short term certificate, but the vessel does require an item of equipment to be routinely serviced or maintained by a regulation?

Answer MIN 612, para 9.2 should be applied as though the vessel had been issued with a short term certificate and the maintenance or servicing may be postponed by up to three months. The Certifying Authority should retain an Annex A declaration but should annotate this to record the specific item of maintenance or servicing that is being postponed by three months

Mecal -updated 08.04.2020

We have requested & received guidance from the MCA on how to assist owners & surveyors to enable vessels to continue to legally operate commercially, where it is found to be difficult or impossible to organise due surveys due to travel restrictions & surveyor/vessel availability.

The MCA guidance is set out in the Marine Information Note MIN 612 – Amendment 1, issued on 24th March.

This is the link:

MIN 612 (M+F) Amendment 2 Coronavirus (COVID-19) – MCA approach to survey and certification of UK vessels.

This MIN allows us to issue a 3 month short term certificate extension in circumstances where no MECAL surveyor is available as a consequence of the COVID-19 outbreak

The short term certificate can be issued following submission of a self-declaration (supplied on application to Mecal & in the format of Annex A of the MIN) dating from the expiry of the certificate or of the applicable survey window.

For annual self- declaration surveys, these should continue as normal

The facility for extension certificate does not apply to vessels newly coming into code

The short term extension certificate will be issued electronically & there will not be a requirement to display a new disc.

To avoid cancellation of the vessel certification, the due survey must be carried out before the expiry date of the short term certificate.

Alternatively if you are not using your vessel for commercial use and wish to voluntarily suspend your certification, please advise the Mecal office.

Suspension can be lifted at a later date with the completion of the relevant survey and we will waive the lift of suspension fee if the suspension is in connection with COVID 19.

For non- SOLAS LSA service arrangements for domestic code vessels please refer to 9.2 of MIN 612; MCA have confirmed that this will also apply to non-SOLAS  LSA servicing for code vessels abroad.

For MLC Arrangements – provided the vessel accommodation and format of the compliant SEA has not changed then the MLC renewal inspection can be extended by three months in line with the above guidelines – subject to the usual financial security requirements for repatriation and medical cover etc being in place.

Please be aware that there are already staff shortages within our Mecal team & we may not be able to sustain our usual standard of service during the period of this pandemic but we will do our best.


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