Bundesamt für Seeschifffahrt und Hydrographie
Sachgebiet S 42
Bernhard-Nocht-Straße 78
20359 Hamburg

Dr. Anja Eikermann
Phone: +49 40 3190-7420
Mail: maritime.security@bsh.de

Ship Security Alert Systems

Ship Security Alert System (SSAS)

The ship security alert system (SSAS) allows transmission of a silent security alert to a flag state authority when the security of the ship is under threat or has been compromised. According to the international requirements regarding the security of ships and of port facilities (SOLAS XI-2, regulation 6) ships must be provided with a SSAS as follows

  1. Ships constructed on or after 1 July 2004,
  2. Passenger ships and passenger high-speed craft constructed before 1 July 2004 not later than at the first survey of their radio installation after 1 July 2004,
  3. Oil tankers, chemical tankers, gas carriers, bulk carriers and cargo high-speed craft of 500 GT and above constructed before 1 July 2004 not later than at the first survey of their radio installation after 1 July 2004.
  4. other cargo ships of 500 GT and above constructed before 1 July 2004 and mobile offshore drilling units not later than at the first survey of their radio installation after 1 July 2006.

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Point of Contact (PoC)

The German point of contact (PoC), located in Cuxhaven, which must be contacted by all German-flagged ships in case of any security related emergency, is available 24/7 by:

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bild alarmsysteme für grefahrenabwehr

Plan approval for the installation of the SSAS

The BSH has established conditions for plan approval ("Bedingungen für die Planprüfung (BfP)") concerning the arrangement, mounting and installation of the navigational and radiocommunications equipment according to the COLREG 72 convention. These conditions are also applicable to the SSAS and must be applied accordingly.


Due to the special requirements on the security alert system the Application for approval of the installation of the SSAS on board a vessel should be submitted in good time to the BSH. For further information please refer to IMO resolution MSC 147(77) of 29.05.2003 and to MSC Circ. 1072 of 26.06.2003.

You can send the application to the BSH via e-mail; this is possible on the electronic application form: fill in form, produce PDF by clicking on the PDF print button and on the opened PDF in the top left corner of the window click "file > attach to e-mail".

The application for plan approval provides also information on fitting out, modification or refit. If the BSH detects any non-compliance of the intended arrangement of the SSAS with the requirements, the applicant will be informed accordingly. Additional requirements may be stipulated to the project.

If the required documents are submitted in good time, the risk of costly modifications is minimized. Two copies each of the following drawings are to be submitted for the verification of the arrangement of a SSAS:

  • General arrangement plan of the ship,
  • Plan of antennas (arrangement of transmitter/receiver antennas incl. SSAS antenna),
  • Description of the SSAS-system (manufacturer and precise designation of the equipment),
  • Lay-out of the wheelhouse with location of alarm- and test buttons,
  • Information on power supply, incl. emergency power supply.

After these documents have been verified by the BSH one copy is kept there in the respective ship’s file, the other copy is forwarded to the company/master of the ship. An initial-/ on board survey is only held in exceptional cases. Prior to commencement of operation on board a functional test must have been conducted successfully. If the ship has already been completely verified in accordance with section 19.1.1 of part A of the ISPS code, a renewed verification for the installation of the SSAS equipment is not required. Fees for plan approval are charged in accordance with the "BSH-Gebührenverordnung" (BSH-Ordinance of fees) and are based on time.

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Confirmation of conformity

No form is needed to apply for a confirmation of conformity at the BSH, Section S42 (Maritime Security). Two copies each of the following drawings are to be submitted with the application:

  • Official designation/name of the equipment,
  • Declaration of the manufacturer in writing that the equipment has been verified in accordance with IMO MSC 147 (77), IMO MSC Circ. 1072, IMO A.694 und IEC 60945 (2002). Regarding the verification according to IEC 60945 (2002) the original test report has to be submitted.
  • all existing type approval certificates of other classification societies,
  • Document/certificate authorising operation of the SSAS, issued by the German Federal Network Agency (Bundesnetzagentur (formerly RegTP))

Please enclose in addition a circuit diagram of the system which provides information on cable routing, connections, type of connectors and interfaces (tested, standardized, approved with certificate), power supply and antenna connections (system arrangement). Fees for verification and issuance of a declaration of conformity are charged in accordance with "BSH-Gebührenverordnung" (BSH-Ordinance of fees).

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