Safety on board

A cruise isn’t just one of the most luxurious and relaxing ways to see the world, it’s also one of the safest.
That’s because every cruise ship has to be built, equipped and operated in accordance with the strict requirements of the international maritime treaty known as the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention, developed by the International Maritime Organization, the UN agency responsible for shipping.

As a result, for example, all cruise ships must have regularly-checked lifeboats, life rafts and life preservers for every person on board, plus a specified minimum additional capacity.

The ultramodern ships in the MSC Cruises fleet go substantially above and beyond what is required, carrying backup mechanical, navigational and safety provisions. And of course our crews undertake extensive training and refresher training, certification and regular drills for emergency situations, including the evacuation of a ship.

So you can cruise in peace with total peace of mind.

Safety Security and Code of Conduct

Before we depart, there will be a compulsory emergency drill (or briefing, if you embark in a secondary port)
In accordance with the international Convention for the Safety Of Life At Sea (SOLAS), you are all required to take part in the emergency drill, where you will learn the correct way to put on your life-jacket and the procedures to follow in the event of an emergency.

Children 0-12 years 
If you are travelling with infants or children under the age of 12 years, on embarkation they will be provided with an ID wristband which must be worn for the entire duration of the cruise. In the unlikely event of an emergency while your children are involved in children’s club activities, our staff will escort them to the Children’s Pick-up Area where they will wait for you to arrive and proceed with them to your Muster Station/Assembly Station.

Security protection  
Guests are protected by a comprehensive system of security, such as the MSC Cruises Access Control and Screening System, which requires proof of identity to access with tickets and on a pre-approved list. Also all luggage must pass through strict check-points, cabins are protected by locks and individually equipped with safe boxes, public areas are monitored by cameras, and highly trained Ship Security Officers continuously patrol the ship and are on emergency call 24/7.

Code of conduct 
We want every Guest to have a truly enjoyable cruise experience. Therefore, MSC Cruises does not tolerate any behavior affecting the comfort, health, safety, and security of other Guests or our crew. Please refer to the contract conditions for more details on this important policy.

How is Safety on board managed ?

All cruise ships are designed and operated in compliance with the strict requirements of the International Maritime Organization, the UN agency that mandates global standards for the safety and operation of cruise ships through adoption of treaties, regulations and resolutions, codified in the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention. 

Safety-related regulations and requirements are rigorous – and ships often go substantially above and beyond what is required, for example carrying backup mechanical, navigational and safety provisions. 

Ships crews undertake extensive training, certification, drills and scenarios for emergency situations, including the evacuation of a ship. 

All cruise ships have lifeboats, life rafts and life preservers for every person on board as well as additional capacity.

When and where are the drills held?

All cruise ships are designed and operated in compliance with the strict requirements of the International Maritime Organization, the UN agency that mandates global standards for the safety and operation of cruise ships through adoption of treaties, regulations and resolutions, codified in the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention. 

Safety-related regulations and requirements are rigorous – and ships often go substantially above and beyond what is required, for example carrying backup mechanical, navigational and safety provisions. 

Ships crews undertake extensive training, certification, drills and scenarios for emergency situations, including the evacuation of a ship. 

All cruise ships have lifeboats, life rafts and life preservers for every person on board as well as additional capacity.

Are there any maps or other instructions?

 Safety instructions on how to reach the relevant muster station and where to find the respective life jackets are available in all cabins, in 6 languages (ITA, ENG, GER, FRA, SPA, PORT, RUS), in the cabin information booklet and behind the cabin door (in 6 languages), where fire instructions and a map are also displayed, showing “You are here” information and the primary and secondary escape routes to the muster stations.

What other enhancements does the line use to ensure safety, i.e. maps showing routes to the nearest lifeboats, etc.?

Maps on the location of the different muster stations are displayed in all public areas and staircases etc. All public areas also feature arrows showing the way to the muster stations and indicating the staircases to reach them. 

In addition, a safety video (in Italian and English) is broadcast 24/7 on the in-cabin television system on channel 1.

How is our crew trained to operate the life boats?

The crew receive regular training ashore, before embarkation and on board. The comprehensive on-board training coordinated by the ship’s Safety Officer consists of 4 two-hour modules, as follows: 

A. Preliminary 
B. Emergency instructions 
C. Fire-fighting 
D. Life-saving 

A significant part of Section D is dedicated to management of the lifeboats. All crew members directly in charge of lifeboats receive additional and specific training on how to prepare, lower, pilot and maintain the lifeboats.

How frequently is testing carried out in which the life boats are lowered?

Every week the crew conduct a general emergency drill with fire simulation and evacuation, including an abandon ship drill with lifeboats.

What are the industry regulations on fire safety on board or cruise ships?

The cruise industry adheres to the rigid regulations contained in the International Convention for the Safety Of Life at Sea (SOLAS) as developed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO). 

These regulations include fire prevention, fire protection and extinguishing systems, crew training and fire emergency response.

Whare measures are in place to prevent fires on board MSC cruises' ships?

MSC ships have been designed to allow the isolation of fire and smoke and the MSC Cruises’ fleet, like all cruise ships complying with industry standards, are equipped with a variety of passive fire-and smoke-fighting measures, including fire-rated interior doors and partitions, fire dampers and ventilation systems. Ships include smoke management systems with fire and smoke dampers and, in addition to fire doors, segregation of ventilation, and pressurized hallways to contain smoke and prevent it from spreading. 

Rules and regulations to prevent and to contain smoke and fire are in place and strictly followed on board all MSC cruise ships. 

The MSC Cruises’ fleet uses several different systems for the prevention of fire. The main system for prevention is the Consilium System which consists of different types of detectors located throughout the ship and divided by the type of the area to be monitored. This prevention system is supported by Fire Patrol, a patrol operated by on board firemen 24 hours a day, in four hour shifts. The patrol is recorded by a digital system with several points located in various areas of the vessel.

What systems are in place to control fires on board if they do break out?

The MSC Cruises’ fleet uses several different systems to control the spread of fire and smoke including fire-rated interior doors and partitions, fire dampers and ventilation systems. 

The main fire fighting system is the Hi-Fog, high-pressure water mist fire protection system, which suppresses and extinguishes fires by discharging a fine water mist at high velocity. The water mist is made by the system when it activates, pushing water at high pressure through specially designed, sprinkler and spray heads.

Do the crew receive fire training?

Crew members are extensively trained to ensure that they react effectively and appropriately in case of fire or smoke. In line with the Standards of Training, Certification & Watchkeeping (STCW) 1995, all crew must take Basic Safety Training (BST) – which includes basic firefighting. 

A fire drill is also carried out on board each MSC ship every week, in a different area of the ship. 

The emergency plan for controlling fire on board MSC vessels is executed by our four Fire Patrols, one of which is dedicated to engine room fires, and two cooling teams. All teams are trained and coordinated by the onboard Safety Officer.

Security Guide: How to report a crime on board

To report a missing person or criminal activity during your cruise we recommend to immediately dial tel. 99 for prompt assistance. For a missing U.S. national and serious felonies, as per the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010 (homicide, suspicious death, kidnapping, assault with serious bodily injury, sexual assaults as defined by federal laws, firing or tampering with the vessel, or theft of money or property in excess of $10.000) the incident must be reported to the F.B.I. as soon as possible and to the U.S. Coast Guard, see the following contact numbers:

 

 MIAMI F.B.I. Tel (754) 7032000 U.S.C.G. Tel (305) 5354472  SAN DIEGO F.B.I. Tel (858) 3201800   U.S.C.G. Tel (619) 2787031
 SAN JUAN F.B.I. Tel (787) 7546000 U.S.C.G. Tel (787) 2892041  LOS ANGELES F.B.I. Tel (310) 4776565 U.S.C.G. Tel (310) 5213801
 ST THOMAS F.B.I. Tel (340) 7773363 U.S.C.G. Tel (340) 7763497  SAN FRANCISCO F.B.I. Tel (310) 4776565 U.S.C.G. Tel (415) 3993547
 NEW YORK F.B.I. Tel (212) 3841000 U.S.C.G. Tel (718) 3544037  HONOLULU F.B.I. Tel (808) 5664300 U.S.C.G. Tel (808) 8422600
 BOSTON F.B.I. Tel (857) 3862000 U.S.C.G. Tel (617) 2235757      

 

There requirements apply in U.S. waters, or on the high seas or in foreign waters if the assailant/victim is a U.S. national. 
The nations visited and the vessel’s registry may also impose further requirements. MSC Cruises reserves the right to report any allegation to law enforcements. For incidents in foreign waters/ports, you may contact the closest U.S. Embassy/Consulate:

ANTIGUA, GUADELOUPE, ST LUCIA, ST KITTS, ST VINCENT, BRITISH & U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS refer to BARBADOS contacts 

 

ARUBABONAIREST MAARTEN  refer to CURACAO in Willemstad Tel (5999) 4613066   acscuracao@state.gov 
AUSTRALIA  Moonah Place, Yarralumla, ACT 2600 Tel (02) 6214-5600 AskEmbassyCanberra@state.gov 
BAHAMAS, OCEAN CAY  42 Queen St. Nassau Tel (242) 322 1181  acsnassau@state.gov

BARBADOS

Wildey Park, St Michael B8-14006 W.I.
Tel (246) 277 4000
 bridgetownacs@state.gov
BELIZE  Floral Park Road Belmopan, Cayo Tel (501) 822 4011  acsbelize@state.gov
 BERMUDA  Crown Hill 16 Middle Rd Devonshire Tel (441) 295 1342  hamiltonconsulate@state.gov
 COLOMBIA  Carrera 45 No. 248-27 Bogotà, D.C. Tel (571) 275 2000   acsbogota@state.gov
 COSTA RICA  Calle 98 Vía 104, Pavas, San José  Tel (506) 2519-2000  acssanjose@state.gov
 CUBA  Calzada between L-M Streets, Vedado Havana Tel (537) 839 4100  acshavana@state.gov 
 FIJI (incl. French Polynesia, Tonga)  31 Loftus Street, Suva Tel (679) 331-4466  SuvaACS@state.gov
 GRAN CAYMAN  202B Smith Rd 150 George Town Tel (345) 945 8173  caymanacs@state.gov
 GRENADA  Lance Aux Epines St. George's Tel (1473) 444 1173  bridgetownacs@state.gov
 GUATEMALA  Av. Reforma 7-01, Zona 10, Guatemala Ciudad Tel (679) 331-4466  consularguatem@state.gov
 HONDURAS  Avenida La Paz Tegucigalpa, MDC Tel (504) 2236 9320  usahonduras@state.gov
 JAMAICA  142 Old Hope Road Kingston 6 Jamaica, W.I. Tel (876) 702 6000  kingstonacs@state.gov
 MARTINIQUE  Av De Arawaks, 97200 Fort de France Tel (596) 596 730621  martinique-ca@state.gov
 MEXICO  Reforma 305 Cuauhtemoc 6500, Mexico City Tel (55) 5080 2000  ACSMexicoCity@state.gov
 NEW ZEALAND  29 Fitzherbert Terrace, Thorndon, Wellington 6011 Tel (64) 4 462 6000  aucklandacs@state.gov
 NICARAGUA  Kilometer 5.5 Carretera Sur, Managua Tel (505) 2252 7100  acs.managua@state.gov
 PANAMA  Building 783, Demetrio Basilio Laka Av Clayton Tel (507) 317 5000  panamaweb@state.gov
 TRINIDAD & TOBAGO  15 Queens Park West, Port of Spain Tel (868) 622 6371  acspos@state.gov 
 SAMOA  5th Floor, ACC Building, Matafele Apia Tel (685) 21 436  ApiaConsular@state.gov

 

We remind you to report immediately any incident to the Reception – Guest Service to assist you, tel. 99. We trust you experience a safe, enjoyable and secure cruise