The ISAF Offshore Special Regulations (www.sailing.org/specialregs) are used by race organisers to provide uniform minimum equipment, accommodation and training standards for monohull and multihull yachts racing offshore.
A number of changes made at the ISAF Annual Conference affect the new 2014-15 edition of the regulations. Unless otherwise specified the amendments are effective on 1 January 2014. An amendment sheet containing all the changes can be viewed here. It should be noted that national prescriptions may take priority over the ISAF text and you should check with your relevant authority.
A brief summary of significant changes:
3.04 Stability Monohulls
Specific monohull stability requirements for Categories 0-3 replace previous recommendations to Race Organisers.
3.14. Pulpits, Stanchions, Lifelines
13.4.2 – the tension of lifelines has been amended from a guideline to a requirement, with specified maximum deflections for top and mid-lifelines (guardrails).
3.14.6 – dyneema lifeline diameter and materials, have been amended to increase the minimum diameter and to permit double-braided construction.
3.14.7 – Pulpits and Stanchions may now be constructed of carbon fibre.
3.29 – Communications Equipment – Radar, AIS
3.29.1 b) v) VHF radio transceivers installed after 31 December 2015 shall be DSC capable. (Digital Selective Calling).(Category 0-3)
vi) – DSC capable VHF transceivers shall be programmed with an Maritime Mobile Service Identity (MMSI) (unique to the boat), be connected to a GPS receiver and be capable of making distress alert calls as well as sending and receiving a DSC position report with another DSC equipped station.
3.29.1 l) has been amended to permit Broadband Radar units.
3.29.1 p) AIS antennas are required to mounted on the top of the mainmast (category 0-2)
4.10 Radar Reflectors
The existing requirements have been amended to: “An octohederal passive radar reflector shall be carried with circular sector plates of minimum diameter 30cm(12”) or a reflector with a documented minimum Radar Cross Section (RCS) area of 2m2 . ”
v) has been amended to require liferaft stowage that can allow ready launching of the liferaft in the case of an inverted monohull with moveable ballast.
(a) has been amended so that a Lifesling is not an optional alternative to a lifebuoy.
4.24 Heaving Line – Lifesling
New (c) requires a Lifesling in categories 0-3.
4.28.2 Man Overboard Alarm
The existing requirement is modified to require that a man overboard position can be recorded within 10 seconds and the position monitored. Categories 0-2.
Other amendments regarding EPIRBS and house-keeping amendments are detailed in the amendment sheet.
For a full report on the changes to the offshore special regulations see amendment sheet click herebelow: http://www.sailing.org/tools/documents/OSR2014AmendmentSheet19122013-.pdf