(a) Issuance by authorized designees; restriction on issuance

Except as provided in section 1903(b)(1) of this title, the Secretary shall designate those persons authorized to issue on behalf of the United States the certificates required by the MARPOL Protocol. A certificate required by the MARPOL Protocol shall not be issued to a ship which is registered in or of the nationality of a country which is not a party to the MARPOL Protocol.

(b) Validity of foreign certificates

Terms Used In 33 USC 1904

  • Administrator: means the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. See 33 USC 1901
  • MARPOL Protocol: means the Protocol of 1978 relating to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973, and includes the Convention. See 33 USC 1901
  • person: means an individual, firm, public or private corporation, partnership, association, State, municipality, commission, political subdivision of a State, or any interstate body. See 33 USC 1901
  • Secretary: means the Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating. See 33 USC 1901
  • ship: means a vessel of any type whatsoever, including hydrofoils, air-cushion vehicles, submersibles, floating craft whether self-propelled or not, and fixed or floating platforms. See 33 USC 1901
  • terminal: means an onshore facility or an offshore structure located in the navigable waters of the United States or subject to the jurisdiction of the United States and used, or intended to be used, as a port or facility for the transfer or other handling of a harmful substance. See 33 USC 1901
  • vessel: includes every description of watercraft or other artificial contrivance used, or capable of being used, as a means of transportation on water. See 1 USC 3

A certificate issued by a country which is a party to the MARPOL Protocol has the same validity as a certificate issued by the Secretary or the Administrator under the authority of this chapter.

(c) Location onboard vessel; inspection of vessels subject to jurisdiction of the United States

A ship required by the MARPOL Protocol to have a certificate—

(1) shall carry a valid certificate onboard in the manner prescribed by the authority issuing the certificate; and

(2) is subject to inspection while in a port or terminal under the jurisdiction of the United States.

(d) Onboard inspections; other Federal inspection authority unaffected

An inspection conducted under subsection (c)(2) of this section is limited to verifying whether or not a valid certificate is onboard, unless clear grounds exist which reasonably indicate that the condition of the ship or its equipment does not substantially agree with the particulars of its certificate. This section shall not limit the authority of any official or employee of the United States under any other treaty, law, or regulation to board and inspect a ship or its equipment.

(e) Detention orders; duration of detention; shipyard option

In addition to the penalties prescribed in section 1908 of this title, a ship required by the MARPOL Protocol to have a certificate—

(1) which does not have a valid certificate onboard; or

(2) whose condition or whose equipment’s condition does not substantially agree with the particulars of the certificate onboard;

shall be detained by order of the Secretary at the port or terminal where the violation is discovered until, in the opinion of the Secretary, the ship can proceed to sea without presenting an unreasonable threat of harm to the marine environment or the public health and welfare. The detention order may authorize the ship to proceed to the nearest appropriate available shipyard rather than remaining at the place where the violation was discovered.

(f) Ship clearance; refusal or revocation

If a ship is under a detention order under this section, the Secretary may refuse or revoke the clearance required by section 60105 of title 46.

(g) Review of detention orders; petition; determination by Secretary

A person whose ship is subject to a detention order under this section may petition the Secretary, in the manner prescribed by regulation, to review the detention order. Upon receipt of a petition under this subsection, the Secretary shall affirm, modify, or withdraw the detention order within the time prescribed by regulation.

(h) Compensation for loss or damage

A ship unreasonably detained or delayed by the Secretary acting under the authority of this chapter is entitled to compensation for any loss or damage suffered thereby.