Marine Transportation Security Regulations (SOR/2004-144)

Regulations are current to 2014-06-12 and last amended on 2008-12-15. Previous Versions

Vessel Personnel without Security Responsibilities

 All vessel personnel, including contractors, whether temporary or permanent, shall receive security orientation appropriate to their functions and time spent on board the vessel, with respect to the following:

  • (a) the meanings of the different MARSEC levels, the procedures at each level and the emergency procedures and contingency plans;

  • (b) the recognition and detection of weapons, explosives and incendiaries and other dangerous substances and devices;

  • (c) the recognition of the characteristics and behavioural patterns of persons who are likely to threaten security; and

  • (d) techniques that might be used to violate security procedures or to circumvent security procedures, equipment or systems.

Security Drills and Exercises


 Security drills and exercises shall test the proficiency of vessel personnel in carrying out their assigned security responsibilities at all MARSEC levels and the effective implementation of the vessel security plan and shall enable the vessel security officer to identify any related security deficiencies that need to be rectified.

Security Drills

  •  (1) A security drill shall be conducted at least once every three months, except when the vessel is out of service, in which case a drill shall be conducted within one week after the vessel is back in service. Security drills may be conducted with other drills, if appropriate.

  • (2) Security drills shall test individual elements of the vessel security plan, including responses to security threats, breaches of security and security incidents, and shall take into account, in respect of the vessel, the types of operations, personnel changes and other relevant circumstances.

  • (3) If the vessel is moored at a marine facility on the date on which the facility has planned to conduct a security drill, the vessel may participate in the drill at the request of the facility.

  • (4) If, at any given time, more than 25 per cent of the vessel’s permanent crew have not participated in a security drill on board the vessel within the previous three months, a security drill shall be conducted within one week.

  • (5) If a vessel is involved in the implementation of security procedures at MARSEC level 2 or MARSEC level 3 following a security incident, the implementation of the procedures is equivalent to a security drill.

Security Exercises

  •  (1) Security exercises

    • (a) shall fully test the vessel security plan and include the substantial and active participation of personnel on board who have security responsibilities;

    • (b) may include the participation of governmental authorities or personnel from marine facilities, port administrations or other vessels who have security responsibilities, depending on the scope and the nature of the exercises;

    • (c) may be performed with respect to only the vessel or as part of a cooperative program to test the vessel security plan of another vessel or a marine facility or port security plan; and

    • (d) shall test elements of coordination, resource availability, response and the communication and notification procedures but not transmit a vessel-to-shore security alert to a maritime rescue coordination centre during the testing of the ship security alert system.

  • (2) Security exercises shall be conducted at least once every calendar year with no more than 18 months between them.

  • (3) Security exercises may be

    • (a) full-scale;

    • (b) a tabletop simulation or seminar;

    • (c) combined with other appropriate exercises; or

    • (d) a combination of two or more of the elements set out in paragraphs (a) to (c).