Collisions, Strandings and Accidents
Collisions, Strandings and Accidents
The International Regulations for Preventing of Collisions at Sea 1972 (“COLREG”) is given statutory force through Merchant Shipping (Collision Regulations) Order 1984 for all vessels transiting the long Malaysian coastline washed by the Indian Ocean on one side and South China Sea on the other.

Special treatment is given to the Straits of Malacca and Singapore, which, continuous safety measures notwithstanding, remains a choke point and high risk for collisions, casualties and pollution. Vessels transiting the Straits are subject to additional safety rules in accordance with an IMO approved traffic separation scheme and mandatory under keel clearance of minimum 3.5 metres enacted in the Merchant Shipping (Collision Regulations) (Rules for Vessels Navigating through the Straits of Malacca and Singapore) Order 2000.

The rule set out in the Maritime Conventions Act 1911 for dividing or apportioning loss to the degree in which each vessel is at fault in a collision incident is given effect through the Merchant Shipping Ordinance 1952. 

Action to enforce a collision claim or lien must be commenced within two years from the date of the incident though in certain circumstances the court may enlarge time if for instance the defendant vessel did not come within the court’s jurisdiction during that period.

A ship has the right to limit its liability for loss of life, personal injuries and loss and damage to property on the basis of its gross tonnage as set out under the Convention on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims 1976 (“1976 London Convention) as amended by its 1996 Protocol. In the East Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak, for the time being, the earlier Convention on the limitation of liability of owners of sea going ships (1957 Brussels Convention) continues to apply.

The Firm, involved in every major shipping casualty since 1990 in Malaysian ports or Malaysian waters, is the acknowledged leader in handling ship casualty claims.

For further details, contact:
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The information herein is for general guidance only, may have been superseded, circumstances may have changed and should not be relied upon for action. This does not in any way represent or replace professional legal advice which in each and every case must be obtained.
Sativale Mathew Arun
Malaysia's Maritime Lawyers
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