e-CFR Navigation Aids


Simple Search

Advanced Search

 — Boolean

 — Proximity


Search History

Search Tips


Latest Updates

User Info


Agency List

Incorporation By Reference

eCFR logo

Related Resources

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

We invite you to try out our new beta eCFR site at https://ecfr.federalregister.gov. We have made big changes to make the eCFR easier to use. Be sure to leave feedback using the Help button on the bottom right of each page!

e-CFR data is current as of September 18, 2020

Title 46Chapter ISubchapter WPart 199Subpart F → §199.620

Title 46: Shipping
Subpart F—Exemptions and Alternatives for Vessels Not Subject to SOLAS

§199.620   Alternatives for all vessels in a specified service.

(a) General. Vessels operating in oceans; coastwise; Great Lakes; lakes, bays, and sounds; and rivers service may comply with alternative requirements to subparts A through E of this part as described in this section for the services specified in table 199.620(a) of this section.

Table 199.620(a)—Alternative Requirements for All Vessels in a Specified Service

Section or paragraph in this part: Service and reference to alternative requirement section or paragraph
Oceans Coastwise Great Lakes Lakes, bays and sounds Rivers
199.70(a): Lifebuoy approval series199.620(b)1199.620(b)1199.620(b)199.620(b)199.620(b).
199.70(b): Lifejacket approval series199.620(c)2199.620(c)2199.620(c)199.620(c)199.620(c).
199.70(b)(1): Number of lifejackets carriedNo Alternative199.620(d)199.620(d)199.620(d)199.620(d).
199.70(b)(4)(i): Lifejacket light approval seriesNo Alternative199.620(e)199.620(e)Not ApplicableNot Applicable.
199.100(b): Manning of survival craftNo AlternativeNo AlternativeNo AlternativeNo Alternative199.620(o).
199.110(f): Embarkation ladder199.620(f)199.620(f)199.620(f)199.620(f)199.620(f).
199.130(b): Survival craft stowage positionNo AlternativeNo Alternative199.620(g)199.620(g)199.620(g).
199.170: Line-throwing appliance approval series199.620(h)2199.620(h)3Not ApplicableNot ApplicableNot Applicable.
199.175: Lifeboat, rescue boat, and rigid liferaft equipment199.620(i)4199.620(i)199.620(j)199.620(j)199.620(j).
199.180 Training and drills199.620(p)199.620(p)199.620(p)199.620(p)199.620(p).
199.190: Spares and repair equipment199.620(n)199.620(n)199.620(n)199.620(n)199.620(n).
199.190(g)(3): Service Intervals for inflatable liferaft or inflatable buoyant apparatus199.620(q)199.620(q)199.620(q)199.620(q)199.620(q).
199.201(a)(2) or 199.261: Inflatable liferaft equipment199.620(l)4199.620(l)199.620(l)199.620(l)199.620(l).
199.201(a)(2) or 199.261: Liferaft approval seriesNo Alternative199.620(k)199.620(k)199.620(k)199.620(k).

1Alternative applies if lifebuoy is orange.

2Alternative applies only to cargo vessels that are less than 500 tons gross tonnage.

3Alternative applies to cargo vessels that are less than 500 tons gross tonnage and to all passenger vessels.

4Alternative applies to passenger vessels limited to operating no more than 50 nautical miles from shore.

(b) Lifebuoy approval series. As an alternative to a lifebuoy approved under approval series 160.150, vessels may carry a lifebuoy approved under approval series 160.050.

(c) Lifejackets approval series. As an alternative to a lifejacket meeting the approval requirements in §199.70, vessels may carry a lifejacket approved under approval series 160.002, 160.005, 160.055, or 160.077.

(d) Lifejacket quantity. Vessels may carry lifejackets as follows:

(1) If lifejackets are stowed in cabins, staterooms, or berthing areas that are readily accessible to each watch or work station, the requirement in §199.70(b)(2)(iv) to have lifejackets at each watch or work station need not be met.

(2) If the vessel carries lifejackets that are designated extended-size, then the number of child-size lifejackets carried to meet §199.70(b)(1)(i) may be reduced. To take the reduction in child-size lifejackets, extended-size lifejackets having the same lower size limit must be substituted for all of the required adult lifejackets. The number of child-size lifejackets required depends on the lower size limit of the extended-size lifejackets and is calculated by any one of the following formulas where PC is the number of child-size lifejackets expressed as a percentage of the number of lifejackets required under §199.70(b)(1):

(i) PC = LS ÷ 4.1, where LS equals the lower size limit expressed in kilograms.

(ii) PC = LS ÷ 9, where LS equals the lower size limit expressed in pounds.

(iii) PC = (LS−81) ÷ 7.6, where LS equals the lower size limit expressed in centimeters.

(iv) PC = (LS−32) ÷ 3, where LS equals the lower size limit expressed in inches.

(e) Lifejacket light approval series. As an alternative to lights approved under approval series 161.112, vessels may use lights for lifejackets and immersions suits approved under series 161.012. However, lifejacket lights bearing Coast Guard approval number 161.012/2/1 are not permitted on vessels certificated to operate on waters where water temperature may drop below 10 °C (50 °F).

(f) Embarkation ladder. An embarkation ladder may be a chain ladder approved under approval series 160.017.

(g) Survival craft stowage positions. Vessels having widely separated accommodation and service spaces may have, as an alternative to the requirements of §199.130(b), all required lifeboats and 50 percent of the required liferafts stowed as close as possible to the accommodation and service space that normally holds the greatest number of persons, with the remainder of the liferafts stowed as close as possible to each other accommodation and service space.

(h) Line-throwing appliance approval series. As an alternative to a line-throwing appliance that meets the requirements in §199.170, vessels may carry a line-throwing appliance approved under approval series 160.031, which may have an auxiliary line that is at least 150 meters (500 feet).

(i) Lifeboat, rescue boat, and rigid liferaft equipment; oceans and coastwise. Lifeboats, rescue boats, and rigid liferafts may carry the equipment specified in table 199.175 of this part for vessels on a short international voyage.

(j) Lifeboat, rescue boat, and rigid liferaft equipment; other services. As an alternative to meeting the survival craft equipment requirements of §199.175, a vessel may carry the equipment specified in table 199.620(j) of this section under the vessel's category of service. Each item in the table has the same description as in §199.175.

Table 199.620(j)—Survival Craft Equipment

Item No.ItemGreat LakesLakes, bays and soundsRivers
LifeboatRigid liferaftRescue boatLifeboatRigid liferaftRescue boatLifeboatRigid liferaftRescue boat
2Bilge pump211
9Fire extinguisher111111
15Instruction card111
20Oars, units4 5111111
26Repair kit6111
27Sea anchor121
31Signal, hand flare6666
32Signal, parachute flare44
33Skates and fenders7111111
35Survival instructions1111
38Tool kit111


1Each liferaft approved for 13 persons or more must carry two of these items.

2Not required for boats of self-bailing design.

3Not required for inflated or rigid-inflated rescue boats.

4Oars not required on a free-fall lifeboat; a unit of oars means the number of oars specified by the boat manufacturer.

5Rescue boats may substitute buoyant paddles for oars, as specified by the manufacturer.

6Not required for a rigid rescue boat.

7Required if specified by the manufacturer.

8Required only if the lifeboat is also the rescue boat.

(k) Liferaft approval series. As an alternative to liferafts that meet the requirements in §§199.201(a) and 199.261(a), vessels may—

(1) Carry inflatable liferafts approved under approval series 160.051; and

(2) Have liferafts with a capacity less than six persons.

(l) Inflatable liferaft equipment. As an alternative to the SOLAS A Pack, vessels may have a SOLAS B Pack for each inflatable liferaft.

(m) [Reserved]

(n) Spare parts and repair equipment. As an alternative to carrying spare parts and repair equipment as required in §199.190(c), a vessel need not carry spare parts and repair equipment if it operates daily out of a shore base where spare parts and repair equipment are available.

(o) Deckhands may be used to operate the survival craft and launching arrangements.

(p) Training and drill subjects required under §199.180 may be omitted if the vessel is not fitted with the relevant equipment, installation or system.

(q) For a new liferaft or inflatable buoyant apparatus, the first annual servicing may be deferred to two years after initial packing if so indicated on the servicing sticker.

[CGD 84-069, 61 FR 25313, May 20, 1996; 61 FR 40281, Aug. 1, 1996, as amended at 63 FR 52820, Oct. 1, 1998; 63 FR 56066, Oct. 20, 1998; USCG-2001-10224, 66 FR 48621, Sept. 21, 2001; USCG-2001-11118, 67 FR 58542, Sept. 17, 2002]

Need assistance?