New rules on boat building, safety and environmental protection: Italy implements the European Directive on recreational craft

The main innovations of the Decreto Legislativo 11 gennaio 2016 n.5, which implements the Directive 2013/53/EU, concern the construction and design of recreational craft as well as the safety and environmental protection of the sea. In particular, new marine engines should comply with standards of cleanest technologies respectful of exhaust-gas emission limits. Moreover, the decree introduces new titles of the craft design categories, which are now based on environmental conditions rather than on the type of navigation. The provisions are also aimed at controlling more carefully the products placed on the market (especially those imported) and at introducing new control tools that can positively promote the competitive dynamics of the market.

With regard to the safety, recreational crafts should be designed to minimize the risks of falling overboard and to facilitate re-boarding. Furthermore, the decree imposes stricter rules against pollution (toilets must be connected only to tanks for sewage) and for the production of electrical, audible and visual signaling systems. Finally, multihull recreational crafts should have emergency exit in case of capsize.

Companies will have one year (until 17 January 2017) to upgrade their production.