Port Security South Africa
"A WORLD CLASS PORT SECURITY SERVICE"
International and Port Security Code
The drive to secure ports which are vital nodes of transport logistic chain was brought into sharp focus in the aftermath of the events of 9/11 in the United States of America.
Crime and terrorism have turned ship and port security into global issues which require global solutions. In the marine sector, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), part of the United Nations, has created guidelines for maritime security. These guidelines have to contribute to the right conditions for unhindered flows of nautical trade, so that ships and ports are properly prepared for the possibility of terrorist attacks and other forms of crime.
What is ISPS
The International Ship and Port Security Code (ISPS) came into being as the result of a resolution taken by the United Nation Security Council in response to the vulnerability of the Maritime Sector. The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) adopted the ISPS Code for Ships and Port Facilities. South Africa being the signatory of IMO has ratified the code. This code has now been given effect by the Merchant Shipping Maritime Security Regulations.
The National Department of Transport becomes the custodian for the implementation of the code. The international deadline for compliance set is 01 July 2004.
On the 29th June 2004, South Africa’s 7 commercial ports, owned and managed by the Transnet National Ports Authority of SA became fully ISPS Code compliant. The milestone is a culmination of a concerted effort by the authority to re-assess, evaluate and upgrade its security and safety processes in conjunction with various government departments such as National Intelligence, South African Police Service, and South African Defence Force etc.
To date Transnet National Port Authority has spent a substantial amount of time and money upgrading security, security assessment plans were drawn up, security personnel retrained and groomed, re-fence it’s port boundaries, relocated guard houses where necessary and installed advanced security features such as closed-circuit television for some of its terminals and Automatic Identification Systems (AIS) that allows for remote ship identification by port control.
The most obvious aspect of this compliance is that it impacts on access to ports by non-port related users. Many areas previously accessible by the general public such as cargo working terminals and ship repair lay-up quays are now only accessible by authorized personnel.
The new Security regulations required the appointment of a Port Security Officer for each port and a Port Facility Security Officer for each terminal. These persons will coordinate security planning, implementation and maintenance between the port authority and port facility operators.
For further queries on the matter please contact:
Port Facility Security Officer's Contact List (In PDF Format)
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Last updated : 18th June 2007