The documents of compliance (DOC) for carrying dangerous goods onboard




Cargo ships guideline

Documents required before loading packaged dangerous goods or marine pollutants onboard a cargo ship include:

• a Document of Compliance with the special requirements for ships carrying dangerous goods as required by regulation 22 ; and

• a Dangerous Goods Declaration or Marine Pollutants Declaration (as appropriate) as required by regulation 10 incorporating a Packing Certificate as required by regulation 12





Document of Compliance (regulation 22) applies to:

• passenger ships built on or after 1 September 1984;

• cargo ships of 500gt or over built on or after 1 September 1984; and

• cargo ships of less than 500gt built on or after 1 February 1992.

Regulation 22(2) provides that no packaged goods or solid dangerous goods in bulk may be taken on board or accepted for carriage on any ship to which regulation 22 applies unless the spaces in which they are to be carried or are carried, as the case may be, comply with the provisions of regulation 54 of Chapter II-2 of SOLAS, whether or not the ship is engaged on international voyages. (Chapter II-2 of SOLAS deals with Construction - Fire protection, fire detection and fire extinction. Regulation II-2/54 concerns Special requirements for ships carrying dangerous goods and contains requirements relating to water supplies, sources of ignition, detection system, ventilation, bilge pumping, personnel protection, portable fire extinguishers, insulation of machinery spaces and water spray system. Regulation II-2/54.3 provides that the flag State Administration must provide the ship with an “appropriate document” as evidence of compliance of construction and equipment with the requirements of regulation 54.)

Regulation 22(3) provides that in the case of ships to which regulation 22 applies engaged on international voyages, no packaged goods or solid dangerous goods in bulk may be taken on board or carried unless the ship has on board a Document of Compliance issued by or on behalf of the MCA or the competent authority of the flag State.

Regulation 22(4) provides that any operator or master who accepts for carriage, or carries, packaged goods or dangerous goods in solid form in bulk:

• on a ship in which the spaces in which they are to be or are carried in do not comply as required by regulation 22(2); or

• in the case of a ship engaged on international voyages, on a ship which does not have on board a Document of Compliance as required by regulation 22(3),

Will be guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction by a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for up to 2 years, or an unlimited fine, or both.


A Document of Compliance issued by the MCA is valid for a maximum of 5 years and certifies:

• that the construction and equipment of the ship was found to comply with the provisions of regulation II-2/54 of SOLAS 74, as amended, and

• that the ship is suitable for the carriage of those classes of dangerous goods as specified in the appended Schedules to the certificate, subject to any provisions of the IMDG Code and the Code of Safe Practice for Solid Bulk Cargoes (BC Code) for the individual substances also being complied with.

Schedule 1 of a Document of Compliance contains a small plan of the ship’s stowage spaces and a table showing the Classes of dangerous goods suitable for stowage in each category of space. Schedule 2 lists the special requirements, as required by the Fire Protection Regulations in force when the certificate was issued, for the ship to carry dangerous goods.



Related articles

International maritime dangerous goods code

Regulations for carrying dangerous goods onboard

Defining various dangerous goods classes

Dangerous goods stowage plan regulation

Regulation for dangerous goods documentation

Transport regulation for dangerous goods at sea

Transport regulation for dangerous goods packed in containers

Regulation for declaration of dangerous goods

Transport law for carriage of deck cargo

Procedure for containerised deck cargo









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