The roll-on/roll-off ship is one of the most successful types operating today. Its flexibility, ability to integrate with other transport systems and speed of operation have made it extremely popular on many shipping routes.
The roll-on/roll-off ship is defined in the November 1995 amendments to Chapter II-1 of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), 1974 as being 'a passenger ship with ro-ro cargo spaces or special category spaces...'
The safety of fishing vessels has been a matter of concern to IMO since the Organization's inception, but the differences in design and operation between fishing vessels and other types of ship have proved to be an obstacle to their inclusion in the SOLAS and Load Lines Conventions.
High-speed craft (HSC) include, among others, air-cushion vehicles (such as hovercraft) and hydrofoil boats.
With the development of many new types of HSC in the 1980s and 1990s, IMO decided to adopt new international regulations dealing with the special needs of this type of vessel. In 1994, IMO adopted the International Code of Safety for High-Speed Craft (HSC Code) (resolution MSC.36 (63), which was developed following a revision of the Code of Safety of Dynamically Supported Craft (resolution A.373(X)).
Passenger ships - usually defined as a ship carrying more than 12 passengers - on international voyages must comply with all relevant IMO regulations, including those in the SOLAS and Load Lines Conventions.
Passenger ships in operation today are subject to a vast array of regulations and standards covering every aspect of ship construction and operation.
Interim guidelines for wing-in-ground (WIG) craft were approved by the Maritime Safety Committee at its 76th session in December 2002 as MSC/Circ.1054.
The interim guidelines were developed by the Sub-Committee on Ship Design and Equipment (DE) with input fom other Sub-Commmittees.
The interim guidelines are intended to provide as much guidance as possible to those involved in the design, construction and operation of WIG craft.