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Brussels, 26 July 2011
Recreational boats to become safer and less polluting
The European Commission has proposed today stricter limits for nitrogen oxides (NOx), hydrocarbons and particulate matters for new motor boats, sailing boats, jet skis and other recreational crafts. In summer NOx concentrations of the some six million recreational craft in the EU can be significant in the areas of big lakes and attractive sea shores. Today’s proposal for a revised Recreational Craft Directive (RCD) will also improve market surveillance, for example by updating the rules on CE marking (see below).
This memo provides information on:
The Recreational Craft Directive (94/25/EC) covers recreational craft (motor boats, sailing boats etc), personal watercraft (jet skis), their engines and the components which are not used for commercial purposes. It lays down the safety requirements that manufacturers shall respect when designing and manufacturing craft as well as the limits for exhaust and noise emissions from marine propulsion engines. It also foresees the relevant procedures for demonstrating the conformity of products to these requirements, including the affixing of the CE marking.
1. Exhaust emissions
The use of test cycles for assessing the conformity of engines to exhaust emission limits has been clarified.
Noise emission levels
Recreational craft with inboard or stern drive engines without integral exhaust, personal watercraft and outboard engines and stern drive engines with integral exhaust need to be designed, constructed and assembled so that noise emissions do not exceed the current limit values of Level 67 of Maximum Sound Pressure.
What these measures mean for industry
2. Design and Constructional safety requirements
The current Directive contains a complete set of requirements ensuring the safety of recreational craft. Some clarifications are made as regards the risk of inversion of multihull craft. The proposal foresees that new habitable multihull craft cannot invert or must have sufficient buoyancy to remain afloat in the inverted position.
A new requirement will be introduced to impose mandatory installation of holding tanks to watercraft fitted with toilets in order to contribute to the marine environmental protection.
Boat design categories
Post construction assessment
The safety of the privately imported boats from the third countries or self-built / re-converted boats will be guaranteed through the application of the appropriate conformity assessment procedure.
3. Affixing of the CE-marking
Rules governing the affixing of the CE marking on the recreational craft, components and engines are laid down in this Directive. Compared with Directive 94/25/EC, it is appropriate to enlarge the obligation to affix the CE-marking also to all inboard engines and stern drive engines without integral exhaust which are regarded as meeting the essential requirements
Furthermore, there are a number of components regulated in the directive: