Polar Code, 2016 Edition (K191E) (eBook)

Published Date

July 2016

Polar Code, 2016 Edition (K191E) (eBook)

(Excludes any applicable taxes)

The Polar Code was developed to supplement existing IMO instruments in order to increase the safety of ships’ operation and mitigate the impact on the people and environment in the remote, vulnerable and potentially harsh polar waters. It came into effect in 2017 for new ships and in 2018 for existing ships.

Be the first to review this product

The Code acknowledges that polar water operation may impose navigational demands beyond the existing requirements of SOLAS, MARPOL and any relevant binding IMO instruments. The key principles for developing the Polar Code have been to use a risk based approach in determining scope and to adopt a holistic approach in reducing risks. Detail is given on ship structure to ensure integrity is retained in ice conditions and during both global and structural loads. Although the Code is intended to apply to both Arctic and Antarctic waters, the legal and geographical differences between the two areas have been taken into account.

Resolution MSC.385(94) International Code for Ships Operating in Polar Waters (Polar Code)
Resolution MEPC.264(68) International Code for Ships Operating in Polar Waters (Polar Code)
Part 1A Safety measures
Chapter 1 General
Chapter 2 Polar Water Operational Manual (PWOM)
Chapter 3 Ship structure
Chapter 4 Subdivision and stability
Chapter 5 Watertight and weathertight integrity
Chapter 6 Machinery installations
Chapter 7 Fire safety/protection
Chapter 8 Lifesaving appliances and arrangements
Chapter 9 Safety of navigation
Chapter 10 Communication
Chapter 11 Voyage planning
Chapter 12 Manning and training
Part 1B Additional guidance regarding the provisions of the Introduction and Part 1A
Part 2A Pollution prevention measures
Chapter 1 Prevention of pollution by oil
Chapter 2 Control of pollution by noxious liquid substances in bulk
Chapter 3 Prevention of pollution by harmful substances carried by sea in packaged form
Chapter 4 Prevention of pollution by sewage from ships
Chapter 5 Prevention of pollution by garbage from ships
Part 2B Additional guidance regarding the provisions of the Introduction and Part 2A

The present International Code for Ships Operating in Polar Waters (Polar Code) was adopted by Maritime Safety Committee (MSC), at its ninety-fourth session, by resolution MSC.385(94), and by the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), at its sixty-eighth session, by resolution MEPC.264(68). It results from strenuous work of various IMO bodies over a five year period. The Polar Code, which enters into force on 1 January 2017, is mandatory under both the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) and the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL). In this context, the safety related requirements are mandatory under the new Chapter XIV of SOLAS, adopted by resolution MSC.386(94), and the marine environment protection related requirements are mandatory under amendments to Annexes I, II, IV and V of MARPOL, adopted by resolution MEPC.265(68).


The Polar Code has been developed to supplement existing IMO instruments in order to provide a more comprehensive set of provisions to address the increased interests and traffic in the polar regions, and the unique operational, environmental and search and rescue concerns peculiar to these areas, taking into account that the consequences of any major safety or pollution incident in polar waters are likely to cause widespread harm to
these pristine environments.


The Polar Code covers the full range of design, construction, equipment, operational, training, search and rescue and environmental protection matters relevant to ships operating in waters surrounding the two poles. It includes mandatory measures covering safety (Part 1A) and pollution prevention (Part 2A) and recommendatory provisions for both (Parts 1B and 2B).

As a specialized agency of the United Nations, IMO is the global standard setting authority for the safety, security and environmental performance of international shipping. Its main role is to create a regulatory framework for the shipping industry that is fair and effective, universally adopted and universally implemented.

In other words, its role is to create a level playing field so that ship operators cannot address their financial issues by simply cutting corners and compromising on safety, security and environmental performance. This approach also encourages innovation and efficiency.

Shipping is a truly international industry, and it can only operate effectively if the regulations and standards are themselves agreed, adopted and implemented on an international basis. The IMO is the forum at which this process takes place.

Title: Polar Code, 2016 Edition (K191E) (eBook)
Subtitle: International Code for Ships Operating in Polar Waters
Edition: 2016
Product Code: MM1410EA
ISBN: ISBN 13: 9789280116281, ISBN 10: 9280116282
Published Date: July 2016
Author: IMO

Bought this product? Why not review it?

If you have a question about this product, please contact us directly.

Windows eBooks:


To access the eBook, you need to install our free Windows eBook Reader.

The application can be downloaded from:



Standalone eBooks are supplied with 1 licence + 1 backup and are not transferable between platforms.


Remote Desktop Services (Terminal Services) and virtual environments are not supported.


The Windows eBook Reader works with Windows XP or later OS (but not Windows RT).

See more details.


Cloud (online) eBooks:


The Cloud (online) eBooks use Microsoft Silverlight browser plugin to deliver the best possible reading experience with the ability to work in offline mode.


It is an annual subscription service (i.e. each eBook is purchased for 1 year of use).

Online licences are not transferrable to Windows or iPad (or vice-versa).


Silverlight is compatible with the major web browsers used on Windows and Mac OS X operating systems.

However it is not supported on Linux, Android, Windows RT and iPad devices and therefore the Cloud eBooks use an HTML site in these instances.

The HTML site is more restricted than the Silverlight version.


See https://www.microsoft.com/silverlight/what-is-silverlight and more details.


Note for Mac Users:


Mac users can read Windows eBooks with Boot Camp or using virtual machines such as Parallels Desktop, Virtual Box, ...

Alternatively, Cloud (online) eBooks are accessible on Mac, including the Silverlight plugin with offline mode.


Note for Linux Users:


Linux users can read Windows eBooks using a virtual PC.

Alternatively, the HTML version of the Cloud (online) eBooks is accessible.


Note for Tablet Users:


Tablets owners can use the HTML version of the Cloud (online) eBooks.