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Specialist Task Force 591:
Development of a European Norm for the implementation of Bridge Alert Management in Digital Selective Calling equipment

Who we are:

 Team Leader:

Mr. ing. Steven M. Kransse, RH Marine Netherlands B.V.

What we do

STF 591 is tasked to implement the concept of Bridge Alert Management (BAM) to Digital Selective Calling (DSC) equipment.

DSC equipment is radio equipment with the main purpose of exchanging messages related to ships in distress; a ‘MAYDAY’ and the confirmation thereof.

BAM was designed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and further detailed by the International Electrotechnical Organization. The BAM concept regulates the messages (alerts) from equipment to the officers on board the vessel the equipment is installed. With BAM, IMO’s aim is to reduce unnecessary distraction of the bridge team and to reduce the cognitive load of the bridge team in order to enable the bridge team to devote full attention to the safe operation of the ship and to immediately identify any situation requiring immediate action to maintain the safe operation of the ship.
More information on Bridge Alert Management can be found in IMO Resolution MSC.302(87), with further details being available in IEC 62923-1 and  -2.

The DSC equipment was conceived in ITU and further standardized in ETSI long the before conception of Bridge Alert Management. The STF team is tasked to draft a new part to the ETSI standard on DSC equipment, to enable manufacturers to understand the impact of BAM and to implement the BAM concept in DSC equipment in a consistent way.

For more details, see our Terms of Reference.

Why we do it

With the drafting of this part of the ETSI standard on DSC, ETSI strives to enable implementation of the IMO performance standard for the concept of Bridge Alert Management (BAM) and thus to further improve maritime safety. The primarily intended scope encompasses all DSC equipment to be installed on SOLAS vessels. However, BAM is of benefit for the safety of all mariners using DSC equipment.

How we do it

The STF uses the structure of the initial document drafted in ETSI TG Marine as input. To make a first draft the STF primarily makes use of the available extensive knowledge of the BAM concept through its leader’s convenorship of IEC TC80 WG16, which was responsible for drafting the technical standards for BAM (IEC 62923-1 and  -2), combined with his practical knowledge of a trained mariner.
After compilation of the first draft ETSI will be requested to invite comments invited from interested parties. Comments from mariners are especially welcome.
Given the short duration of the STF the results will be further discussed in ETSI TG MARINE and finally the EU.  


The deliverable, apart from several drafts, is the ETSI EN 300 338-7 published version.
It is directly related to ETSI EN 300 338-1 and the ITU-R Recommendation M.493 15. The standard implements and links to IMO resolution MSC.302(87), IEC 62923-1 and IEC 62923-2.
Stakeholders are invited to provide comments to STF 591 using the contact information at the top of this page.

Time plan

STF 591 started 1st of October 2020. A stable draft is planned to be available 30 December 2020.

The final draft with WG approval is anticipated for 30 March 2021 with successive TB approval by 30 April 2021, after which ENAP will follow over June, July and August 2021.

This should result in publication by 30 November 2021. 

How to contact us

For any questions, information or input on this draft standard please don’t hesitate to contact the STF leader using the contact details at the top of this page.

This information is based upon STF working assumptions.

The views expressed do not necessarily represent the position of ETSI in this context.