Technical Circular No:14/2018

Subject: Bahamas information bulletin regarding ECDIS, Nautical Charts and Publications.

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  • Bahamas Maritime Authority (BMA) has revised information bulletin no. 51 providing Bahamas requirements for carriage of ECDIS, Nautical Charts and publications.
  • The summary of important points from the notice are listed as below:
    • Paper nautical charts and publications, electronic navigational charts (ENC), Raster charts and paper and electronic publications, carried under the provisions of SOLAS Chapter V, are to be corrected to the latest edition of “Notices to Mariners”.
    • Administration accepted carriage of required documents in electronic format as an equivalent to the carriage of paper documents provided ENC/RNC and electronic publications are issued officially or authorized and approved by a SOLAS contracting government
    • These documents must meet the requirements of marine navigation and kept up to date with adequate backup.
    • A ship is required to have nautical charts and nautical publications to plan and display the ship's route for the intended voyage and to plot and monitor positions throughout the voyage with back up arrangement to fulfill the SOLAS requirements (SOLAS Ch. 5, reg. and reg.
    • For ships required to carry ECDIS, the Company is to determine the form of chart to be used on board as the primary means of navigation. For the purposes of compliance with SOLAS requirements as per point no.4; administration has accepted the following arrangements.    


Primary System

Secondary requirement

ECDIS operating  in electronic    navigational chart(ENC) mode or, where ENC Coverage is not available, RCDS Mode

Either: a second independent ECDIS which has a separate power supply and data input, operating in electronic navigational chart (ENC) mode or, where ENC Coverage is not available and RCDS Mode is operating, Paper charts (adequate and up to date for the intended voyage).


Paper charts (adequate and up to date for the intended voyage).

Paper Charts

ECDIS Fitted (as required by SOLAS V/19.2.10 and complying with V/27.)

  • Vessels using paper charts as the primary means of navigation are required to have ECDIS complying with the requirements.
  • Navigational Officers on such ships must be trained in the use of ECDIS as required by BMA bulletin no 138.
  • Electronic versions of list of lights, tide tables and other nautical publications are accepted by Administration provided the electronic versions complying with the requirements and are issued officially by administration, authorized Hydrographical office or other approved organization.
  • International Code of Signals and the IAMSAR Manual must be carried in hard copy.
  • Ship owners/ operators and masters are advised to be guided by above.


  1. Bahamas maritime Authority information Bulletin no. 51


This Technical Circular and the material contained in it is provided only for the purpose of supplying current information to the reader and not as an advice to be relied upon by any person. While we have taken utmost care to be as factual as possible, readers/ users are advised to verify the exact text and content of the Regulation from the original source/ issuing Authority.

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