The sun has always been a problem for mariners at sea who constantly need to navigate safely. Glare and heat make this an unenviable task but there is guidance and legislation which covers this issue.
Rule 5 of the International Collision Regulations entitled ‘Look-out’ reads, ‘every vessel shall at all times maintain a proper look-out by sight and hearing as well as by all means appropriate in the prevailing circumstances and conditions so as to make full appraisal of the situation and the risk of collision’.
Therefore, in sunny and bright conditions mariners need to make sure that the sun does not compromise the safe passage of the vessel. SOLASOLV® sunscreens are a perfect solution to the problems associated with the sun. They reduce glare by up to 93%, reduce heat by up to 87% whilst ensuring 100% optical clarity and true colour rendition in sunny and bright conditions.
Permanently tinted windows are not a satisfactory solution as they can create problems when navigating at night as navigation marks and lights may become distorted, and colour identification hindered. Much of the legislation that exists on navigation visibility dismisses the idea of fitting polarised and tinted windows including:
- International Code of Safety for High-Speed Craft, resolution MSC.97(73) 15.7.3.
- IMO Resolution MSC.31 (63) − Regulation 22 − Navigation Bridge Visibility
- Merchant Shipping (Navigation Bridge Visibility) Regulation 1998. Statutory Instrument No. 1419
- U.S.C.G. Title 46 − Subpart 92.03-1
- Part 7, Chapter 9 of the Navigational Arrangements for Periodic One Man Watch − Windows, section 2.4.7.
SOLASOLV® sunscreens are again the ideal solution to this legislation. They provide effective glare, heat and UV light protection, similar to that of tinted windows, and they are instantly retractable and removable when not required.
Owing to the immense benefits sunscreens provide for mariner comfort and safety, new legislation has recently been published to support their use on all vessels:
IMO 126.96.36.199.6 − Removable Sunscreens specifies that ‘To ensure a clear view and to avoid reflections in bright sunshine, sunscreens with a minimum colour distortion should be provided at all windows. Such screens should be readily removable and not permanently installed’.
Most newbuilds and many vessels under refit are now specifying the installation of retractable sunscreens for navigation windows to comply with the ever increasing demands for marine safety.