The shipmaster must deal with both national and international legislation which applies on all seagoing vessels. Therefore, the purpose of this handbook is to provide a good insight with regard to national and international laws and regulations. The book focuses primarily on the safety of the vessel, the crew, the environment and cargo operations, whatever the ship’s flag state or nationality of the crew may be.
This book is the worldwide international standard Handbook for the shipmaster and all other interested parties National maritime laws of states are almost comparable because these legislations originate from a variety of international maritime agreements. Maritime law follows, in most nations, a separate code and has jurisdiction independent of national laws. International pillars for national maritime laws are:
- United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS)
- International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL)
- International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS)
- International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW)
- Maritime Labour Convention (MLC)
This Handbook explains the most important legal terms of international and national law for the shipmaster. The influence of EU rules on national maritime legislation of EU member states is also described. National legislation of the flag state has priority on board unless the vessel is located in the waters of a foreign coastal state. The hierarchy or priority of various jurisdictions and legislations in different maritime zones is therefore extensively explained in the Handbook.
This Handbook has not been written in legal language, but in the language of the shipmaster and seafarers. The Legal Handbook Shipmaster will be invaluable to any shipmaster wherever on the globe. The shipmaster is at the heart of this book.
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