Published on Australian Maritime Safety Authority (

We are seeking feedback on proposed changes to Marine Order 27 – relating to safety of navigation and radio equipment

Consultation closed 8 October 2023

Key dates 

11 September 2023 

Consultation opens

8 October 2023 

Consultation closed

1 January 2024 

Proposed commencement of revised MO27

About Marine Order 27 and the proposed changes

We want your feedback on the proposed changes to Marine Order 27 (Safety of navigation and radio equipment) (MO27). 

MO27 relates to navigation safety measures and equipment, radio equipment, and danger, urgency and distress signals and messages.   

The proposed changes include: 

  • incorporating amendments to SOLAS Chapter IV ‘Radiocommunications’ from IMO Resolution MSC.496(105), noting there are no resulting changes to carriage requirements  
  • incorporating amendments to SOLAS Chapter V ‘Safety of Navigation’ from IMO Resolution MSC.496(105), noting there are no resulting changes to carriage requirements 
  • updating SOLAS requirements, including their application to regulated Australian vessels and foreign flagged vessels   
  • removing Schedule 2 IMO Resolutions 
  • minor updates to Schedule 3 GMDSS equipment for vessels to which Chapter IV of SOLAS does not apply 
  • removing Schedule 4 Station frequencies for GMDSS distress and safety communications 
  • including mandatory registration of EPIRBs on regulated Australian vessels (RAVs) 
  • including penalty units for turning off some equipment, including Automatic Identification System (AIS) and Long-Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) 
  • updating definitions, including EPIRB, qualified compass adjuster and NAVAREA X 
  • revision of formatting and terminology to reflect current drafting practice. 

As EPIRB is defined in several marine orders, AMSA will move the definition of EPIRB into Marine Order 1 (Administration) 2013 (MO1) for administrative simplicity. As a result, consequential amendments will be required to MO1, and Marine Order 25 (Equipment – lifesaving) 2014 (MO25) where EPIRBs are mentioned.  

MO25 will require consequential amendments to remove reference to provisions of SOLAS Chapter III (Life-saving Appliances and Arrangements) that have,  through IMO Resolution Maritime Safety Committee.496(105), been moved into SOLAS Chapter IV. Consequential amendments to MO25 will avoid duplication in marine order requirements. 

AMSA intends to recognise MSC.1.Circ.1676 Delays Affecting the Availability of New GMDSS Equipment Compliant with the Revised Performance Standards set out in Resolutions MSC.511(105), MSC.512(105) and MSC.513(105)). This Circular acknowledges the delays in availability of equipment and until January 2028, allows for the requirements to be implemented. All three Resolutions are mentioned at SOLAS IV/14 and IV/18. Compliance with these Resolutions are requirements of MO27 S29 (SOLAS IV/14) and MO27 S29 (SOLAS IV/18). AMSA will prepare a Marine Notice to formally recognise the Resolution. 

MO27 (2016) is referenced in the National Standard for Commercial Vessels (NSCV) sub-sections C7B: Communications equipment and C7C: Navigation Equipment. C7B and C7C will be updated to refer to the new Marine Order 27. There are no resulting changes to carriage requirements in MO27.

Important information

View the proposed marine order in full.

View the summary of proposed changes to MO27.

View Marine Orders Amendment (Marine Order 27 — consequential changes) Order 2023

Related documents 

Have your say

Consultation closed 8 October 2023 11.59pm on 8 October 2023.