The Impact of US Domestic Tonnage Regulations on Design, Maintenance and Manning

The use of additional steel in the framing of a ship’s hull adds increased construction costs (both material and labor), structural weight, compromises bulkhead and equipment placement, and adds to life cycle costs due to the additional protective coatings required.  The use of tonnage openings and the requirement for progression to/from them compromises watertight integrity and joiner layout.  These artificial means to reduce a vessel’s tonnage accomplish only one purpose – to reduce vessel operating manpower and the level of licensing required by law.  The intent of the International (1969) Tonnage Convention was to develop a new standard that would avoid these pitfalls – why hasn’t it succeeded in the US?  

The intent of this presentation is to enlighten the naval architect and, if nothing else, give them some insight into why vessels designed for US domestic trade are compromised by regulation.   This presentation will cover the regulations themselves and the impact these rules have on vessel construction and maintenance and crew licensing and manning. 

Estimated presentation time 45 plus Q & A 
For background on this topic, please download the following:


Phil Essex, Tonnage Coordinator, Moorsom Consulting Group LLC


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