Independent Lifeboats Servicing and Testing Organisations

Merchant Shipping Notice MSN 1803 (M) ANNEX Appendix 3 provides details of the requirements for the approval of Independent Lifeboats Servicing and Testing Organisations.

As under MSN 1803 - LIFEBOATS - Measures to Prevent Accidents.
Part 1, section 4.1
Where these Guidelines require certification of accredited service personnel, such certification should be issued by the manufacturer or the ILSTO, in accordance with an established system for training and authorisation.


Independent Lifeboat Servicing Companies wishing to acquire MCA approval for their operation should submit to the nearest MCA Marine Office the following documentation:

  • Proof that their operation is certified and complies with a quality standard (ISO 9001 or equivalent). The standard procedures for the servicing of lifeboat systems should be submitted.
  • Portfolio justifying at least two years servicing experience with different manufacturer’s equipment.
  • Traceability records system. A record system which provides traceability of work carried out and parts used must be maintained. All spare parts used should be the original manufacturer’s spare parts. If the equipment manufacturer no longer exists and there are no original spare parts then the equipment should be replaced by equipment compliant with the Marine Equipment Directive (“Wheelmarked”).
  • Accredited Service Personnel detailed Training Program.
  • All information referred to in the above should be readily available in case of an accident involving a lifeboat serviced by the Independent Lifeboat Servicing Company at the request of the MCA or The Maritime Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB).
  • All information (2 copies) referred to in the above should be sent to the MCA’s Marine Office nearest to the ILSTO or to the Survey Branch in the MCA’s Head Quarters (foreign ILSTO should submit their documentation in English).

The approval will last until 31st December 2008 after which the above Policy will be reviewed. Updated documentation may be required for re-approval. Independent Lifeboats Servicing and Testing Organisations are recommended to acquire Manufacturers authorisation in the meanwhile.

ilsto_list_07.02.11.pdfClick Here to download Adobe Acrobat PDF Document Icon(PDF 17.2 KB) a list of Independent Lifeboats Servicing and Testing Organisations. This list will be updated as further ILSTO are approved by MCA.

Contact:LSA and Evacuation Policy Manager
Shipping Safety Branch
Maritime Coastguard Agency
105 Commercial Road
SO15 1EG
United Kingdom


+44 (0)2380 329 100


+44 (0)2380 329 120


+44 (0) 2380 329 251