Risk, Safety, Training and Welfare

Fishing is a hazardous occupation and promoting safe working practices and training of fishermen is a critical part of the work of the NFFO. The Federation has representation on many maritime safety groups within the United Kingdom and Europe and engages on the world stage at the IMO/ILO.

Commercial fishing remains the most dangerous industrial occupation in the UK. The National Fisherman’s Federation Organisation can provide support to members, skippers and crews to manage risk at sea on their vessels, to ensure their vessels are operated in the safest way possible, that crews are properly trained, and that the crew receive the best welfare provision.   Risk, Safety and Training is led in NFFO by a subcommittee of the Executive Committee. The subcommittee is chaired by NFFO co-opted member, Nigel Blazeby.

The links and information below are provided to members to assist them in preparing and maintaining their vessels such that they remain compliant, and safe.

If members want specific advice, then they should contact: nffo@nffo.org.uk or 01904 635430 where they will be signposted to someone who can help.

MCA Codes of Safe Working Practices (There are 3 codes depending on vessel size, the codes list in detail the regulation and requirements). 

Under 15m:

Guidance overview: The Code of Practice for the Safety of Small Fishing Vessels of less than 15m Length Overall – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

15 – 24m:

MSN1872_Amendment_No.1.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk)

Over 24m:

MSN1873_Amendment_No.1.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk)

MCA Code Aide memoires (These are the aide memoires MCA surveyors use – they are brief and incredibly helpful for owners and skippers to prepare for survey)

Under 15m:

MSF5549 R08.21 (publishing.service.gov.uk)

ANNEX_3_-_Checklists_of_requirements_for_different_length_vessels_.docx (live.com)

15 – 24m:

MSF5550 15-24m aide memoire (publishing.service.gov.uk)

Over 24m:

MSF5551 R08.21 (publishing.service.gov.uk)

Instructions to Surveyors (These are very detailed instructions for MCA surveyors, too much detail for most, but if you want extreme detail it’s here)

Survey and inspection of fishing vessels chapters 1 to 17 (MSIS 27) – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

MAIB – This link takes you to MAIB investigation reports for fishing vessels. 

Marine Accident Investigation Branch reports – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

MCA Marine Notices: MCA puts out Marine notices:

  • MGN – Guidance
  • MSN – Shipping (Regulation)
  • MIN – Information
  • ILO C188 Help:

Ships and cargoes: Marine Notices – detailed information – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

(Note: those applicable to fishing vessels are denoted by ‘F’. E.g. MGN 411F)

ILO C188 Help: Owner’s safety  responsibilities:

Safety responsibilities under ILO 188 – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Medical Requirements for fisherman:

M Notice Template – MSF 5011 (publishing.service.gov.uk)

Risk Assessment; The UK’s leading online tool for Risk Assessment is the ‘Safety Folder’