Overview of maritime and marine protection rules
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The legal basis for rules
The maritime and marine protection rules are statutory instruments (or secondary legislation) made by the Minister of Transport under the Maritime Transport Act 1994.
While the Maritime Transport Act stipulates broad principles of maritime law, the rules contain detailed technical standards and procedures. Compliance with the rules is required because they form part of New Zealand maritime law. Failure to comply with the rules may be an offence under the act.
Maritime New Zealand has the power to make emergency rules in certain circumstances, under the Maritime Transport Act 1994.
Maritime rules relate to the safety of ships and people. The rules prescribe requirements for ship design, construction, equipment, crewing, operation and tonnage measurement, and for the carriage of passengers and cargoes. Many of the standards are based on international ship safety conventions.
Marine protection rules
Marine protection rules aim to prevent the disposal of waste and marine pollution from ships. Marine protection rules implement international conventions and standards. These rules regulate:
- dumping of waste at sea
- oil spill contingency plans
- controls in relation to harmful substances
Latest rule updates
The 2016 rule amendments correct minor errors contained in the rules to make them easier and clearer to read and understand.
Applying for an exemption
Under certain circumstances, we may grant exemptions from complying with a maritime or marine protection rule.