The Coast Guard does not test materials or systems for approval but rather specifies the required test methods and minimum performance criteria for approval. Product testing must be performed by a Coast Guard Accepted or Recognized Independent Laboratory.

Please send the Submittal Package and other related information to TypeApproval@uscg.mil.  Please see What to submit when corresponding with ENG-4 regarding equipment approvals/renewal.  For files sizes above 10MB and less than 8GB you may submit correspondence via the ARL Secure Access File Exchange (SAFE) at https://safe.arl.army.mil/

Once the equipment has been approved by this office, it will receive Coast Guard Type Approval and a Certificate of Approval (COA). The COA will be issued for 5 years and will remain valid during that time period if the product meets the testing of the Quality Control Program.

For a complete listing of USCG Type Approved Equipment, please visit the Coast Guard Marine Information Exchange (CGMIX).

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION : THIS ITEM IS NO LONGER APPROVED. Equipment approved under this Approval Category is for replacement in kind only. Manufacturers can submit new winch designs under Approval Category 160.115.
APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION : THIS ITEM IS NO LONGER APPROVED. Equipment approved under this Approval Category is for replacement in kind only. Manufacturers can submit new davit designs under Approval Category 160.132

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION: The standards, tests, and procedures for Coast Guard approval of a winch can be found in 46 CFR 160.115. These regulations incorporate by reference the IMO requirements in Chapter VI of the IMO LSA Code and the associated recommendations on testing (Resolution MSC.81(70)) Part 1/8.

Winches approved under 46 CFR 160.115 serve the carriage requirements onboard a U.S. flag vessel engaged in both domestic and international routes. The Coast Guard no longer maintains a domestic winch standard in the Subchapter Q regulations, previously identified under approval series 160.015 and codified in obsolete regulations 46 CFR 160.015.

 

The following steps apply to most new winch designs:

  1. Manufacturer submits an application for approval;
  2. Pre-approval plan review by an independent lab or Commandant (CG-ENG-4);
  3. Successful prototype testing witnessed by USCG personnel and/or independent lab staff;
  4. Certificate of approval issued by Commandant (CG-ENG-4); and
  5. Annual production reports submitted by the manufacturer.

APPLICATION PACKAGE: To seek approval of a new winch from the Coast Guard, please submit a request to typeapproval@uscg.mil. Your request should contain the information contained below under “pre-approval plan review”. If you have any questions about what to submit, please contact us at the same email address.

 

PRE-APPROVAL PLAN REVIEW. Pre-approval review evaluates the design for compliance with 46 CFR 160.115-7. Commandant (C-ENG-4) staff will conduct the review, or a designated independent lab with prior agreement from this office will perform it.

NOTE: For any changes in design or performance to existing designs holding a USCG approval certificate, certificate holders should follow the procedures in 46 CFR 160.115-23. When in doubt if the change is significant to the approval, contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil to discuss.

To request pre-approval review from an Independent Laboratory, please first ensure the lab is authorized to conduct a review on behalf of the Coast Guard. See https://cgmix.uscg.mil/EQLabs by approval series for a list of independent labs designated to conduct pre-approval plan review, and any limitations imposed on their role. If you have questions about this process, please contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil.

When engaging with an independent lab for plan review, follow the independent laboratory's procedures for design review on behalf of the Coast Guard. Once the independent laboratory has completed preliminary design review, you must submit the information below prior to scheduling prototype testing

If an Independent Laboratory conducted pre-approval plan review, please submit the following to typeapproval@uscg.mil:

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment;
  • The address of any manufacturing location where the winches will be fabricated;
  • The general arrangement and top level assembly drawings, along with a master drawing list, bearing the approval stamp of the Independent Laboratory;
  • The Operation, Training and Maintenance Manual(s) required by 46 CFR 160.115-9 and 160.115-21*; and
  • The design assessment or similar document from the Independent Laboratory that clearly indicates compliance with 46 CFR 160.115-7.

*You may defer submission of the Operations and Maintenance manual at this stage, but must be submitted and reviewed by us to the standards in 160.115-21 prior to issues of the certificate of approval.

PROTOTYPE CONSTRUCTION: Once we have determined the design meets the requirements of 46 CFR 160.115-7, the manufacturer should build a prototype.

PROTOTYPE TESTING. Once the prototype is fabricated, the manufacturer should schedule prototype testing with the nearest Coast Guard Marine Inspection office, unless other arrangements are made with this office prior to conducting the testing. The preferred forms for prototype test reports of winches are the Revised standardized life-saving appliance evaluation and test report forms contained in IMO MSC.1/Circ.1632. A sample test form in Word format is available at the bottom of this page. A similar format may be used if it captures the same information as that required by 46 CFR 160.115-13.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL: Following satisfactory prototype testing, submit the test reports signed by a USCG Marine Inspector and/or Independent Laboratory surveyor, as required, and one set of any revised drawings of the as built product to us for review. If not already submitted as part of the pre-approval plan review, the manufacturer must submit a copy of the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) manual for us to review. The O&M Manual may contain information for aligned products, e.g., winch and davit, such that they do not need to be in separate manuals.

Commandant (CG-ENG-4) will issue the Certificate of Approval.  If no changes were made to the product during prototype construction, or no changes were identified as needed after testing, the manufacturer’s plans submitted during pre-approved plan review will suffice. Expect a set of drawings  stamped approved are returned to the manufacturer electronically if Commandant (CG-ENG-4) performed plan review.

Product is now recognized for manufacture and sale as a USCG approved product, based on the conditions listed on the COA. See “Facts about Certificates of Approval (COAs)” on our FAQs page for more information.

ANNUAL PRODUCTION REPORT. The manufacturer must submit an annual report to Commandant (CG-ENG-4) containing the information in 46 CFR 160.115-15(b). Manufacturers may submit one annual production summary for their entire range of approved products across multiple approval series. The report may be submitted electronically to typeapproval@uscg.mil.

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION: The standards, tests, and procedures for Coast Guard approval of a davit can be found in 46 CFR 160.132. These regulations incorporate by reference the IMO requirements in Chapter VI of the IMO LSA Code and the associated recommendations on testing (Resolution MSC.81(70)) Part 1/8.

Davits approved under 46 CFR 160.132 serve the carriage requirements onboard a U.S. flag vessel engaged in both domestic and international routes. The Coast Guard no longer maintains a domestic davit standard in the Subchapter Q regulations, previously identified under approval series 160.015 and codified in obsolete regulations 46 CFR 160.015.

 

The following steps apply to most new davit designs:

  1. Manufacturer submits an application for approval;
  2. Pre-approval plan review by an independent lab or Commandant (CG-ENG-4);
  3. Successful prototype testing witnessed by USCG personnel and/or independent lab staff;
  4. Certificate of approval issued by Commandant (CG-ENG-4); and
  5. Annual production reports submitted by the manufacturer.

APPLICATION PACKAGE: To seek approval of a new davit from the Coast Guard, please submit a request to typeapproval@uscg.mil. Your request should contain the information contained below under “pre-approval plan review”. If you have any questions about what to submit, please contact us at the same email address.

 

PRE-APPROVAL PLAN REVIEW. Pre-approval review evaluates the design for compliance with 46 CFR 160.132-7. Commandant (C-ENG-4) staff will conduct the review, or a designated independent lab with prior agreement from this office will perform it.

NOTE: For any changes in design or performance to existing designs holding a USCG approval certificate, certificate holders should follow the procedures in 46 CFR 160.132-23. When in doubt if the change is significant to the approval, contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil to discuss.

To request pre-approval review from an Independent Laboratory, please first ensure the lab is authorized to conduct a review on behalf of the Coast Guard. See https://cgmix.uscg.mil/EQLabs by approval series for a list of independent labs designated to conduct pre-approval plan review, and any limitations imposed on their role. If you have questions about this process, please contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil.

When engaging with an independent lab for plan review, follow the independent laboratory's procedures for design review on behalf of the Coast Guard. Once the independent laboratory has completed preliminary design review, you must submit the information below prior to scheduling prototype testing

If an Independent Laboratory conducted pre-approval plan review, please submit the following to typeapproval@uscg.mil:

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment;
  • The address of any manufacturing location where the davits will be fabricated;
  • The general arrangement and top level assembly drawings, along with a master drawing list, bearing the approval stamp of the Independent Laboratory;
  • The Operation, Training and Maintenance Manual(s) required by 46 CFR 160.132-9 and 160.132-21*; and
  • The design assessment or similar document from the Independent Laboratory that clearly indicates compliance with 46 CFR 160.132-7.

*You may defer submission of the Operations and Maintenance manual at this stage, but must be submitted and reviewed by us to the standards in 160.132-21 prior to issues of the certificate of approval.

PROTOTYPE CONSTRUCTION: Once we have determined the design meets the requirements of 46 CFR 160.132-7, the manufacturer should build a prototype.

PROTOTYPE TESTING. Once the prototype is fabricated, the manufacturer should schedule prototype testing with the nearest Coast Guard Marine Inspection office, unless other arrangements are made with this office prior to conducting the testing. The preferred forms for prototype test reports of davits are the Revised standardized life-saving appliance evaluation and test report forms contained in IMO MSC.1/Circ.1632. A sample test form in Word format is available at the bottom of this page. A similar format may be used if it captures the same information as that required by 46 CFR 160.132-13.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL: Following satisfactory prototype testing, submit the test reports signed by a USCG Marine Inspector and/or Independent Laboratory surveyor, as required, and one set of any revised drawings of the as built product to us for review. If not already submitted as part of the pre-approval plan review, the manufacturer must submit a copy of the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) manual for us to review. The O&M Manual may contain information for aligned products, e.g., davit and davit, such that they do not need to be in separate manuals.

Commandant (CG-ENG-4) will issue the Certificate of Approval.  If no changes were made to the product during prototype construction, or no changes were identified as needed after testing, the manufacturer’s plans submitted during pre-approved plan review will suffice. Expect a set of drawings  stamped approved are returned to the manufacturer electronically if Commandant (CG-ENG-4) performed plan review.

Product is now recognized for manufacture and sale as a USCG approved product, based on the conditions listed on the COA. See “Facts about Certificates of Approval (COAs)” on our FAQs page for more information.

ANNUAL PRODUCTION REPORT. The manufacturer must submit an annual report to Commandant (CG-ENG-4) containing the information in 46 CFR 160.132-15(b). Manufacturers may submit one annual production summary for their entire range of approved products across multiple approval series. The report may be submitted electronically to typeapproval@uscg.mil.

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  The Coast Guard no longer approves life floats or rigid buoyant apparatus, in accordance with Section 609 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-281). For more information, see our letter dated July 1, 2015.

 

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  Follow the requirements of the LSA Code and USCG Checklist for RIGID LIFERAFTS located in the below link.  Non-SOLAS (Domestic) Liferafts must meet the same general requirements except they may have a capacity of less than 6 persons.

 

SUBMITTAL PACKAGE:  Submittal should be in accordance with 46 CFR 159.005.  Preapproval review is required.  An independent laboratory must be used for approval testing and production oversight.  You must submit the information required by 159.005-5 in the Preapproval Review Package.  However, a sample is not required.

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment.
  • A test report from the Accepted Independent Laboratory showing compliance of the product or equipment with the applicable standard.
  • Evidence that an acceptable follow-up factory inspection program with the Accepted Independent Laboratory is in place.
  • Required drawings/plans of the equipment. 

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION: See LSA Code and IMO Recommendation on Testing.  Production testing is similar to the testing conducted for inflatable liferafts.

US/EC MUTUAL RECOGNITION AGREEMENT (MRA):  This product can be approved under the US/EC Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) on marine equipment.

SUBMITTAL PACKAGE:  Please submit the follow information in the Submittal Package:

  1. A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment.
  2. A test report from the Accepted Independent Laboratory showing compliance of the equipment with the applicable LSA Code and the IMO Recommendation on Testing.
  3. Evidence that an acceptable follow-up factory inspection program with the Accepted Independent Laboratory is in place.
  4. Instruction manual(s).
  5. Drawings and plans of the equipment in the stowed position and in the deployed position.
 INFLATABLE LIFERAFT FOR DOMESTIC SERVICE
APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  Follow the requirements of 46 CFR 160.051.  The Coast Guard does not test materials or systems for approval but rather specifies the required test methods and minimum performance criteria for approval.  Product testing must be performed by a Coast Guard Accepted Independent Laboratory

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  Follow the requirements of 46 CFR 160.151.

SUBMITTAL PACKAGE:  Please submit the follow information in the Submittal Package:

 

 

 

 

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard preapproval of the equipment.
  • Cognizant OCMI notification of where the approval tests will take place.
  • A test report from the Accepted Independent Laboratory showing compliance of the product or equipment with the applicable standard.
  • Evidence that an acceptable follow-up factory inspection program with the Accepted Independent Laboratory is in place.
  • Required drawings/plans of the equipment.

 

 

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  The Coast Guard no longer approves life floats or rigid buoyant apparatus, in accordance with Section 609 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-281). For more information, see our letter dated July 1, 2015.
APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  This item is no longer approved.
APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  Approval under 46 CFR 160.035 is only for lifeboats installed on domestic commercial vessels that are for replacement in kind.  Lifeboats approved under this category cannot be placed onboard a commercial vessel engaged in foreign voyages or for new lifeboat installations.
APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  This item is no longer approved.

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  Evacuation equipment approved under 160.075 are for vessels with freeboards to the embarkation deck of 3 meters or less that are engaged in domestic voyages.  The systems approved under this category are similar in many respects to the SOLAS-compliant systems. However, because they are optional, the USCG does not require multiple compartmentation in the inflatable chambers, and they are not required to be subjected to the heavy weather sea trial and most severe structural tests which apply to the SOLAS systems.  Currently approvals are based upon the following test program:

  1. Cold inflation test per resolution MSC.81(70), Part 1/12.4.4
  2. Hot inflation test per resolution  MSC.81(70), Part 1/12.4.5
  3. Overpressure test per resolution MSC.81(70), Part 1/12.4.6
  4. A deployment test from the maximum allowable stowage height to demonstrate the satisfactory operation of the system, and that it can be deployed by one person
  5. Timed evacuation test to demonstrate that the slide does not adversely affect compliance with the 30 minute evacuation time requirement

SUBMITTAL PACKAGE:  Please submit the following information in the Submittal Package:

  1. A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment.
  2. A test report from the Accepted Independent Laboratory showing that the evacuation slide complies with the above tests.
  3. Evidence that an acceptable follow-up factory inspection program with the Accepted Independent Laboratory is in place.
  4. Instruction manual(s).
  5. Drawings and plans of the equipment in the stowed position and in the deployed position.

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION:  Follow the requirements of the LSA Code and USCG Checklist for RIGID LIFERAFTS located in the below link.  The Coast Guard does not test materials or systems for approval but rather specifies the required test methods and minimum performance criteria for approval.  Product testing must be performed on by a Coast Guard Accepted Independent Laboratory.
 
US/EC MUTUAL RECOGNITION AGREEMENT (MRA):  This product can be approved under the US/EC Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA) on marine equipment.  For information on the MRA please see the below link.
 
LINKS

US/EC Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA)

Rigid Life raft Checklist
 

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION

The standards, tests, and procedures for Coast Guard approval of a SOLAS lifeboat can be found in 46 CFR 160.135. These regulations incorporate by reference the IMO requirements in Chapter IV of the IMO LSA Code and the associated recommendations on testing (Resolution MSC.81(70)) Part 1/6.

Lifeboats approved under 46 CFR 160.135 serve the carriage requirements onboard a U.S. flag vessel engaged in both domestic and international routes.  The Coast Guard no longer maintains a domestic lifeboat standard in the Subchapter Q regulations, previously identified under approval series 160.035 and codified in obsolete regulations 46 CFR 160.035.

For further information on certain equipment and components for lifeboats, see the links at the bottom of this page.

The following steps apply to most new lifeboat designs:

  1. Manufacturer submits an application for approval;
  2. Pre-approval plan review by Commandant (CG-ENG-4) or an independent lab;
  3. Construction of the prototype under the supervision of the independent lab;
  4. Successful prototype testing witnessed by USCG personnel and/or independent lab staff;
  5. Certificate of approval issued by Commandant (CG-ENG-4); and
  6. Annual production reports submitted by the manufacturer.

APPLICATION PACKAGE: To seek approval of a new lifeboat from the Coast Guard, please submit a request to typeapproval@uscg.mil. Your request should contain the information contained below under “pre-approval plan review”. If you have any questions about what to submit, please contact us at the same email address.

PRE-APPROVAL PLAN REVIEW. Pre-approval review evaluates the design for compliance with 46 CFR 160.135-7. Commandant (C-ENG-4) staff will conduct the review, or a designated independent lab with prior agreement from this office will perform it.

NOTE: For any changes in design or performance to existing designs holding a USCG approval certificate, certificate holders should follow the procedures in 46 CFR 160.135-23. When in doubt if the change is significant to the approval, contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil to discuss.

To request pre-approval review from an Independent Laboratory, please first ensure the lab is authorized to conduct a review on behalf of the Coast Guard. See https://cgmix.uscg.mil/EQLabs by approval series for a list of independent labs designated to conduct pre-approval plan review, and any limitations imposed on their role. If you have questions about this process, please contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil.

When engaging with an independent lab for plan review, follow the independent laboratory's procedures for design review on behalf of the Coast Guard. Once the independent laboratory has completed preliminary design review, you must submit the information below prior to construction of the prototype.  

If pre-approval plan review was conducted by an Independent Laboratory, please submit the following to typeapproval@uscg.mil:

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment;
  • The address of any manufacturing location where the lifeboat will be fabricated;
  • The general arrangement and top level assembly drawings, along with a master drawing list, bearing the approval stamp of the Independent Laboratory;
  • The Operation, Training and Maintenance Manual(s) required by 46 CFR 160.135-9 and 160.135-21*; and
  • The design assessment or similar document from the Independent Laboratory that clearly indicates compliance with 46 CFR 160.135-7.

*You may defer submission of the Operations and Maintenance manual at this stage, but must be submitted and reviewed by us to the standards in 160.135-21 prior to issues of the certificate of approval.

PROTOTYPE CONSTRUCTION: Once we have determined the design meets the requirements of 46 CFR 160.135-7, the manufacturer should build a prototype under the supervision of the independent lab per the requirements in 46 CFR 160.135-11. At the conclusion of the prototype construction, the independent lab must submit an inspection report.

PROTOTYPE TESTING. Once the prototype test report is received and acknowledged by Commandant (CG-ENG-40, the manufacturer should schedule prototype testing with the nearest Coast Guard Marine Inspection office, unless other arrangements are made with this office prior to conducting the testing. The preferred forms for prototype test reports of lifeboats are the Revised standardized life-saving appliance evaluation and test report forms contained in IMO MSC.1/Circ.1630. A sample test form in Word format is available at the bottom of this page. A similar format may be used if it captures the same information as that required by 46 CFR 160.135-13.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL: Following satisfactory prototype testing, submit the test reports signed by a USCG Marine Inspector and/or Independent Laboratory surveyor, as required, and one set of any revised drawings of the as built product to us for review. If not already submitted as part of the pre-approval plan review, the manufacturer must submit a copy of the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) manual for us to review. The O&M Manual may contain information for aligned products, e.g., winch and davit or lifeboat and release mechanism, such that they do not need to be in separate manuals.

Commandant (CG-ENG-4) will issue the Certificate of Approval.  If no changes were made to the product during prototype construction, or no changes were identified as needed after testing, the manufacturer’s plans submitted during pre-approved plan review will suffice. Expect a set of drawings  stamped approved are returned to the manufacturer electronically.

Product is now recognized for manufacture and sale as a USCG approved product, based on the conditions listed on the COA. See “Facts about Certificates of Approval (COAs)” on our FAQs page for more information.

ANNUAL PRODUCTION REPORT. The manufacturer must submit an annual report to Commandant (CG-ENG-4) containing the information in 46 CFR 160.135-15(b). Manufacturers may submit one annual production summary for their entire range of approved products across multiple approval series. The report may be submitted electronically to typeapproval@uscg.mil.


 

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION

The standards, tests, and procedures for Coast Guard approval of a SOLAS rescue boat can be found in 46 CFR 160.156. These regulations incorporate by reference the IMO requirements in Chapter V of the IMO LSA Code and the associated recommendations on testing (Resolution MSC.81(70)) Part 1/7.

SOLAS rescue boats approved under 46 CFR 160.156 serve the carriage requirements onboard a U.S. flag vessel engaged in both domestic and international routes.  See also 46 CFR 160.056 for rescue boats approved by the local OCMI.

For further information on certain equipment and components for lifeboats, see the links at the bottom of this page. This includes lists for resins, foam, and engines acceptable for installation in USCG approved lifeboats/rescue boats.

The following steps apply to most new rescue boat designs:

  1. Manufacturer submits an application for approval;
  2. Pre-approval plan review by Commandant (CG-ENG-4) or an independent lab;
  3. Construction of the prototype under the supervision of the independent lab;
  4. Successful prototype testing witnessed by USCG personnel and/or independent lab staff;
  5. Certificate of approval issued by Commandant (CG-ENG-4).
  6. Annual production reports submitted by the manufacturer

APPLICATION PACKAGE: To seek approval of a new SOLAS rescue boat from the Coast Guard, please submit a request to typeapproval@uscg.mil. Your request should contain the information contained below under “pre-approval plan review”. If you have any questions about what to submit, please contact us at the same email address.

PRE-APPROVAL PLAN REVIEW. Pre-approval review evaluates the design for compliance with 46 CFR 160.156-7. Commandant (C-ENG-4) staff will conduct the review, or a designated independent lab with prior agreement from this office will perform it.

NOTE: For any changes in design or performance to existing designs holding a USCG approval certificate, certificate holders should follow the procedures in 46 CFR 160.156-23. When in doubt if the change is significant to the approval, contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil to discuss.

To request pre-approval review from an Independent Laboratory, please first ensure the lab is authorized to conduct a review on behalf of the Coast Guard. See https://cgmix.uscg.mil/EQLabs by approval series for a list of independent labs designated to conduct pre-approval plan review, and any limitations imposed on their role. If you have questions about this process, please contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil.

When engaging with an independent lab for plan review, follow the independent laboratory's procedures for design review on behalf of the Coast Guard. Once the independent laboratory has completed preliminary design review, you must submit the information below prior to construction of the prototype/prior to scheduling prototype testing.  

If pre-approval plan review was conducted by an Independent Laboratory, please submit the following to typeapproval@uscg.mil:

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment;
  • The address of any manufacturing location where the rescue boat will be fabricated;
  • The general arrangement and top level assembly drawings, along with a master drawing list, bearing the approval stamp of the Independent Laboratory;
  • The Operation, Training and Maintenance Manual(s) required by 46 CFR 160.156-9 and 160.156-21*; and
  • The design assessment or similar document from the Independent Laboratory that clearly indicates compliance with 46 CFR 160.156-7.

*You may defer submission of the Operations and Maintenance manual at this stage, but must be submitted and reviewed by us to the standards in 160.156-21 prior to issues of the certificate of approval.

PROTOTYPE CONSTRUCTION: Once we have determined the design meets the requirements of 46 CFR 160.156-7, the manufacturer should build a prototype under the supervision of the independent lab per the requirements in 46 CFR 160.156-11. At the conclusion of the prototype construction, the independent lab must submit an inspection report].

PROTOTYPE TESTING. Once the prototype test report is received and acknowledged by us, the manufacturer should schedule prototype testing with the nearest Coast Guard Marine Inspection office, unless other arrangements are made with this office prior to conducting the testing. The preferred forms for prototype test reports of rescue boats are the Revised standardized life-saving appliance evaluation and test report forms contained in IMO MSC.1/Circ.1631. A sample test form in Word format is available at the bottom of this page. A similar format may be used if it captures the same information as that required by 46 CFR 160.156-13.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL: Following satisfactory prototype testing, submit the test reports signed by a USCG Marine Inspector and/or Independent Laboratory surveyor, as required, and one set of any revised drawings of the as built product to us for review. If not already submitted as part of the pre-approval plan review, the manufacturer must submit a copy of the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) manual for us to review. The O&M Manual may contain information for aligned products, e.g., winch and davit or lifeboat and release mechanism, such that they do not need to be in separate manuals.

Commandant (CG-ENG-4) will issue the Certificate of Approval.  If no changes were made to the product during prototype construction, or no changes were identified as needed after testing, the manufacturer’s plans submitted during pre-approved plan review will suffice. Expect a set of drawings stamped approved are returned to the manufacturer electronically.

Product is now recognized for manufacture and sale as a USCG approved product, based on the conditions listed on the COA. See “Facts about Certificates of Approval (COAs)” on our FAQs page for more information.

ANNUAL PRODUCTION REPORT. The manufacturer must submit an annual report to Commandant (CG-ENG-4) containing the information in 46 CFR 160.156-15(b). Manufacturers may submit one annual production summary for their entire range of approved products across multiple approval series. The report may be submitted electronically to typeapproval@uscg.mil.


 

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION: The standards, tests, and procedures for Coast Guard approval of a lifeboat/rescue boat release mechanism can be found in 46 CFR 160.133. These regulations incorporate by reference the IMO requirements in Chapter IV of the IMO LSA Code and the associated recommendations on testing (Resolution MSC.81(70)) Part 1/6.

Release mechanisms approved under 46 CFR 160.133 serve the carriage requirements onboard a U.S. flag vessel engaged in both domestic and international routes. Approval series 160.133 covers both onload/offload release mechanism as well as purely offload release mechanisms for single and double-fall applications. See approval series 160.170 for the requirements for automatic off-load release mechanisms.

 

The following steps apply to most new release mechanism designs:

  1. Manufacturer submits an application for approval;
  2. Pre-approval plan review by Commandant (CG-ENG-4) or an independent lab;
  3. Successful prototype testing witnessed by USCG personnel and/or independent lab staff;
  4. Certificate of approval issued by Commandant (CG-ENG-4); and
  5. Annual production reports submitted by the manufacturer.

APPLICATION PACKAGE: To seek approval of a new release mechanism from the Coast Guard, please submit a request to typeapproval@uscg.mil. Your request should contain the information contained below under “pre-approval plan review”. If you have any questions about what to submit, please contact us at the same email address.

 

PRE-APPROVAL PLAN REVIEW. Pre-approval review evaluates the design for compliance with 46 CFR 160.133-7. Commandant (C-ENG-4) staff will conduct the review, or a designated independent lab with prior agreement from this office will perform it.

NOTE: For any changes in design or performance to existing designs holding a USCG approval certificate, certificate holders should follow the procedures in 46 CFR 160.133-23. When in doubt if the change is significant to the approval, contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil to discuss.

To request pre-approval review from an Independent Laboratory, please first ensure the lab is authorized to conduct a review on behalf of the Coast Guard. See https://cgmix.uscg.mil/EQLabs by approval series for a list of independent labs designated to conduct pre-approval plan review, and any limitations imposed on their role. If you have questions about this process, please contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil.

When engaging with an independent lab for plan review, follow the independent laboratory's procedures for design review on behalf of the Coast Guard. Once the independent laboratory has completed preliminary design review, you must submit the information below prior to scheduling prototype testing.

If an Independent Laboratory conducted pre-approval plan review, please submit the following to typeapproval@uscg.mil:

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment;
  • The address of any manufacturing location where the release mechanisms will be fabricated;
  • The general arrangement and top level assembly drawings, along with a master drawing list, bearing the approval stamp of the Independent Laboratory;
  • The Operation, Training and Maintenance Manual(s) required by 46 CFR 160.133-9 and 160.133-21*; and
  • The design assessment or similar document from the Independent Laboratory that clearly indicates compliance with 46 CFR 160.133-7.

*You may defer submission of the Operations and Maintenance manual at this stage, but must be submitted and reviewed by us to the standards in 160.133-21 prior to issues of the certificate of approval.

PROTOTYPE CONSTRUCTION: Once we have determined the design meets the requirements of 46 CFR 160.13-7, the manufacturer should build a prototype.

PROTOTYPE TESTING. Once the prototype is fabricated, the manufacturer should schedule prototype testing with the nearest Coast Guard Marine Inspection office, unless other arrangements are made with this office prior to conducting the testing. The preferred forms for prototype test reports of release mechanisms are the Revised standardized life-saving appliance evaluation and test report forms contained in IMO MSC.1/Circ.1630. A sample test form in Word format is available at the bottom of this page. A similar format may be used if it captures the same information as that required by 46 CFR 160.133-13.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL: Following satisfactory prototype testing, submit the test reports signed by a USCG Marine Inspector and/or Independent Laboratory surveyor, as required, and one set of any revised drawings of the as built product to us for review. If not already submitted as part of the pre-approval plan review, the manufacturer must submit a copy of the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) manual for us to review. The O&M Manual may contain information for aligned products, e.g., winch and davit or lifeboat and release mechanism, such that they do not need to be in separate manuals.

Commandant (CG-ENG-4) will issue the Certificate of Approval.  If no changes were made to the product during prototype construction, or no changes were identified as needed after testing, the manufacturer’s plans submitted during pre-approved plan review will suffice. Expect a set of drawings  stamped approved are returned to the manufacturer electronically.

Product is now recognized for manufacture and sale as a USCG approved product, based on the conditions listed on the COA. See “Facts about Certificates of Approval (COAs)” on our FAQs page for more information.

ANNUAL PRODUCTION REPORT. The manufacturer must submit an annual report to Commandant (CG-ENG-4) containing the information in 46 CFR 160.133-15(b). Manufacturers may submit one annual production summary for their entire range of approved products across multiple approval series. The report may be submitted electronically to typeapproval@uscg.mil.

APPROVAL GUIDANCE & INFORMATION: The standards, tests, and procedures for Coast Guard approval of a davit-launched liferaft automatic offload boat release mechanism can be found in 46 CFR 160.170. These regulations incorporate by reference the IMO requirements in Chapter VI of the IMO LSA Code and the associated recommendations on testing (Resolution MSC.81(70)) Part 1/8.

Contrary to the name, davit-launched liferaft automatic release hooks may launch single fall lifeboats and rescue boats. See 46 CFR 199.160(d)(2).

Automatic offload release mechanisms approved under 46 CFR 160.170 serve the carriage requirements onboard a U.S. flag vessel engaged in both domestic and international routes. Also, davit-launched liferaft automatic release hooks may be approved under the US/EC Mutual Recognition Agreement, but must still have a 160.170 approval number issued by the Notified Body and marked with that number. Please see NVIC 02-19 for more details.

 

For USCG approval, the following steps apply to most new release mechanism designs:

  1. Manufacturer submits an application for approval;
  2. Pre-approval plan review by Commandant (CG-ENG-4) or an independent lab;
  3. Successful prototype testing witnessed by USCG personnel and/or independent lab staff;
  4. Certificate of approval issued by Commandant (CG-ENG-4).
  5. Annual production reports submitted by the manufacturer

APPLICATION PACKAGE: To seek approval of a new release mechanism from the Coast Guard, please submit a request to typeapproval@uscg.mil. Your request should contain the information contained below under “pre-approval plan review”. If you have any questions about what to submit, please contact us at the same email address.

 

PRE-APPROVAL PLAN REVIEW. Pre-approval review evaluates the design for compliance with 46 CFR 160.170-7. Commandant (C-ENG-4) staff will conduct the review, or a designated independent lab with prior agreement from this office will perform it.

NOTE: For any changes in design or performance to existing designs holding a USCG approval certificate, certificate holders should follow the procedures in 46 CFR 160.170-23. When in doubt if the change is significant to the approval, contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil to discuss.

To request pre-approval review from an Independent Laboratory, please first ensure the lab is authorized to conduct a review on behalf of the Coast Guard. See https://cgmix.uscg.mil/EQLabs by approval series for a list of independent labs designated to conduct pre-approval plan review, and any limitations imposed on their role. If you have questions about this process, please contact us at typeapproval@uscg.mil.

When engaging with an independent lab for plan review, follow the independent laboratory's procedures for design review on behalf of the Coast Guard. Once the independent laboratory has completed preliminary design review, you must submit the information below prior to scheduling prototype testing]  

If an Independent Laboratory conducted pre-approval plan review, please submit the following to typeapproval@uscg.mil:

  • A cover letter requesting Coast Guard Type Approval of the equipment;
  • The address of any manufacturing location where the release mechanisms will be fabricated;
  • The general arrangement and top level assembly drawings, along with a master drawing list, bearing the approval stamp of the Independent Laboratory;
  • The Operation, Training and Maintenance Manual(s) required by 46 CFR 160.170-9 and 160.170-21*; and
  • The design assessment or similar document from the Independent Laboratory that clearly indicates compliance with 46 CFR 160.170-7.

*You may defer submission of the Operations and Maintenance manual at this stage, but must be submitted and reviewed by us to the standards in 160.170-21 prior to issues of the certificate of approval.

PROTOTYPE CONSTRUCTION: Once we have determined the design meets the requirements of 46 CFR 160.13-7, the manufacturer should build a prototype.

PROTOTYPE TESTING. Once the prototype is fabricated, the manufacturer should schedule prototype testing with the nearest Coast Guard Marine Inspection office, unless other arrangements are made with this office prior to conducting the testing. The preferred forms for prototype test reports of release mechanisms are the Revised standardized life-saving appliance evaluation and test report forms contained in IMO MSC.1/Circ.1632. A sample test form in Word format is available at the bottom of this page. A similar format may be used if it captures the same information as that required by 46 CFR 160.170-13.

CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL: Following satisfactory prototype testing, submit the test reports signed by a USCG Marine Inspector and/or Independent Laboratory surveyor, as required, and one set of any revised drawings of the as built product to us for review. If not already submitted as part of the pre-approval plan review, the manufacturer must submit a copy of the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) manual for us to review. The O&M Manual may contain information for aligned products, e.g., winch and davit or lifeboat and release mechanism, such that they do not need to be in separate manuals.

Commandant (CG-ENG-4) will issue the Certificate of Approval.  If no changes were made to the product during prototype construction, or no changes were identified as needed after testing, the manufacturer’s plans submitted during pre-approved plan review will suffice. Expect a set of drawings  stamped approved are returned to the manufacturer electronically.

Product is now recognized for manufacture and sale as a USCG approved product, based on the conditions listed on the COA. See “Facts about Certificates of Approval (COAs)” on our FAQs page for more information.

ANNUAL PRODUCTION REPORT. The manufacturer must submit an annual report to Commandant (CG-ENG-4) containing the information in 46 CFR 160.170-15(b). Manufacturers may submit one annual production summary for their entire range of approved products across multiple approval series. The report may be submitted electronically to typeapproval@uscg.mil.

The Coast Guard uses the IMO requirements for acceptance of buoyancy material for SOLAS lifeboats and rescue boats.   These same materials may be used in some ring buoys, life floats, buoyant apparatus, and the like.  (For some domestic applications, materials meeting the 46 CFR 160.035 Mil specifications may also be used.)

For acceptance of any material we must have a full detailed test report, not just an approval certificate or other certification.  We cannot proceed without the complete report.  An independent laboratory, or a ship classification society does NOT need to witness the tests.

The IMO tests are in section 6.2 of the IMO Recommendation on Testing (A.689)

We encourage you to use the IMO Test Report Forms for Lifeboat Buoyant Materials – 4.3.3 LIFEBOAT BUOYANT MATERIAL, EVALUATION AND TEST REPORT

 

REQUIRED EQUIPMENT IMO MSC.1/Circ.1628 Personal Lifesaving appliances
FIRE-RETARDANT RESINS GUIDE IMO MSC.1/Circ.1629 Visual Signals
BUOYANCY FOAM LIST IMO MSC.1/Circ.1630 Survival Craft
ACCEPTED ENGINE LIST IMO MSC.1/Circ.1631 Rescue Boats
  IMO MSC.1/Circ.1632 Launching and embarkation appliances
  IMO MSC.1/Circ.1633 Other life-saving appliances