Outer Continental Shelf National Center of Expertise (OCSNCOE)
Policy Letters that apply to support vessels (OSVs (to include Liftboats) and small passenger vessels supporting oil and gas operations) are listed in the tables below, grouped by issuing authority and ordered from newest to oldest (by policy number). Click on the policy number to open the document.
District 8 (Gulf of Mexico) Policy
Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circulars (NVICs)
NVICs that apply to OCS support vessels are listed in the table below, ordered from newest to oldest (by NVIC number). Click on the NVIC number to open the document. ALL NVICs can be found on the Official NVIC Page.
U.S. Coast Guard Marine Safety Manual
Vessels that support or conduct OCS Activities fall under numerous vessel types and categories. The majority of the vessels that are involved in this work are Offshore Supply Vessels (OSVs), Industrial Vessels or Small Passenger Vessels. These vessels are mostly regulated under 46 CFR Subchapters L, I and T, respectively. 46 CFR Subchapters D, F, J, O and S and 33 CFR also have applicabilities to these vessel types. For vessels involved in OCS Activities, the following chapters in the Marine Safety Manual (MSM), Volume II: Section G - OCS Activities apply:
○ Chapter 1, Regulations, Policy and Guidance for a Unit Conducting an OCS Activity, and
○ Chapter 6, Procedures Applicable to Other Vessels Engaged in OCS Activities.
Code of Federal Regulations (CFRs)
CFRs that pertain to support vessels are as follows:
Primary subchapters for the vessel type -
○ 46 CFR Subchapter I - Cargo and Miscellaneous Vessels (often referred to as Industrial Vessels)
○ 46 CFR Subchapter L - Offshore Supply Vessels
○ 46 CFR Subchapter T - Small Passenger Vessels (Under 100 Gross Tons)
Additional subchapters that apply (not all will apply to each of the vessels inspected under the subchapters listed above) -
○ 46 CFR Subchapter A - Procedures Applicable to the Public
○ 46 CFR Subchapter B - Merchant Marine Officers and Seamen
○ 46 CFR Subchapter E - Load Lines
○ 46 CFR Subchapter F - Marine Engineering
○ 46 CFR Subchapter G - Documentation and Measurement of Vessels
○ 46 CFR Subchapter J - Electrical Engineering
○ 46 CFR Subchapter Q - Equipment, Construction and Materials: Specifications and Approval
○ 46 CFR Subchapter S - Subdivision and Stability
Note that 46 CFR Subchapters D, I-A, N, O, V or W, or portions thereof, may also be utilized for vessels with specific arrangements/equipment or involved in specific operations.
○ 33 CFR Subchapter D - International Navigation Rules
○ 33 CFR Subchapter E - Inland Navigation Rules
○ 33 CFR Subchapter F - Vessel Operating Regulations
○ 33 CFR Subchapter H - Maritime Security (Parts 101, 103 and 104)
○ 33 CFR Subchapter N - Outer Continental Shelf Activities
○ 33 CFR Subchapter O - Pollution
○ 33 CFR Subchapter P - Ports and Waterways Safety
Note that 33 CFR Subchapter A also has applicability in regards to administration and legal actions.
CFRs can be viewed at ecfr.gov (regularly updated online version) or govinfo.gov (annual editions).
"Old" CFRs (click on the "year"):
○ 46 CFR Subchapter I, 1995 edition ("Old I") and 1963 edition ("Old-Old I")
○ 46 CFR Subchapter J, 1995 edition ("Old J") and 1981 edition ("Old-Old J")
○ 46 CFR Subchapter T, 1995 edition ("Old T")
Reference books and guides (compiled by subject)
Reference "Books" and Guides (by subject):
○ Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) Guide
○ Introduction to Dynamic Positioning (DP) Systems
○ Vessel General Permit