Practice Australian Government
Guide Department of Transport and
Number 1 Regional Services
PREPARING MARITIME SECURITY PLANS
Under the Maritime Transport Security Act 2003 (the Act), some Maritime Industry
Participants (MIPs) are required to conduct security assessments and prepare
maritime security plans for implementation prior to 1 July 2004. Well-developed
maritime security plans that are prepared following broad consultation with other
MIPs and stakeholders will ensure effective risk based security measures are
implemented across Australian security regulated ports.
This Better Practice Guide has been developed to provide guidance on how the task
of conducting security assessments and preparing maritime security plans can be
completed by port operators, port facility operators and port service providers within
a port covered by the Act. The guide outlines some key tasks and provides a better
practice flow chart that will assist port operators, port facility operators and port
service providers to help each other to complete their respective maritime security
The Department of Transport and Regional Services (DOTARS) recognises that
there are many ways in which MIPs can complete these tasks. However, there are
some key things that port operators, port facility operators and port service providers
should consider when preparing maritime security plans to ensure port-wide
compliance with the requirements of the Act and the Maritime Transport Security
1 Identify all Maritime Industry Participants (MIPS)
The Act at Section 10 defines Maritime Industry Participants (MIPs) as: -
(a) port operators; or
(b) port facility operators; or
(c) the ship operator for a regulated Australian ship; or
(d) the ship operator for a regulated foreign ship; or
(e) a person (other than a maritime security inspector or a duly authorised officer)
appointed by the Secretary under this Act to perform a maritime transport
security function; or
(f) a contractor who provides services to a person mentioned in paragraphs (a) to
(g) a person who:
(i) conducts a maritime-related enterprise; and
(ii) is prescribed in the regulations.
Note: Neither the Australian Defence Force nor the Australian Customs Service can be a
maritime industry participant. The regulations may also exclude other Commonwealth
Agencies from being maritime industry participants: see sub-Section 9(2) of the Act.
Port Service Providers are also prescribed as MIPs under the regulations.
Regulation 1.05 defines the following as Port Service Providers:
a) Lighter or barge operator;
b) line handling operator;
c) pilot boat operator;
d) tug operator.
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It is suggested that each port operator should identify port facility operators and port
service providers that are MIPs within their port area and consult with them to
confirm their awareness of the requirements of the Act. This is a vital first step that
ensures that port facility operators and port service providers within a port can be
invited to take part in consultation and communication processes regarding
completion of a security assessment and development of a maritime security plan for
a port operator.
2 Designate Maritime Security Officers
Regulations 1.20, 1.25 and 1.30 require Port Operators, Port Facility Operators and
Port Service Providers to designate in writing a person as security officer. These
regulations also describe the duties and responsibilities of security officers. The
security officer must be designated by name or by reference to a position.
The security officer will be required to among other things, assist the MIP to meet
their obligations under the Act and Regulations. Port Operators, Port Facility
Operators and Port Service Providers must ensure that the people appointed as
Have the knowledge and ability to perform the duties of a security officer;
are given the training set out in the Maritime Security Plan;
are suitable people to access and handle security information;
Have the authority to act on instructions received from the Secretary.
3 Port-wide communication and coordination.
To achieve effective communication and coordination across ports about security
matters it is recommended that ports convene port security committees or other
consultative forums comprising representatives of each port facility operator and
port service provider within the port. Port security committees should also include
representation from local police, emergency services and other Australian and state
government agencies such as the Australian Customs Service and marine authorities.
Port operators, port facility operators and port service providers should also consider
how best to consult with their employees and contractors regarding security measures
or procedures to be implemented.
4 Identify those Maritime Industry Participants required to have plans
Section 42 of the Act identifies those MIPs required to have maritime security
plans. Port Security Committees could be used to examine maritime security plan
requirements and to discuss options to include port facility operators and port service
providers within maritime security plans for port operators. For example, where
appropriate tug and barge operators could be covered by a maritime security plan for
a port operator as per Section 45 of the Act. Port operators will also need to consult
with port facility operators and port service providers to complete the requirements
of their maritime security plan in respect of a map of the security regulated port. Port
facility operators and port service providers not covered by a maritime security plan
for a port operator will also need to ensure that they advise the port operator of their
intentions to complete maritime security plans to meet their own requirements under
the Act and the regulations.
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5 Conduct Security Assessments.
The Act at Section 47 (1)(a) requires that each security plan submitted must include a
security assessment. A security assessment is the part of a security plan that
identifies, analyses, evaluates, and treats risks and/or threats to maritime transport
security. Port operators, port facility operators and port service providers are required
to complete security assessments. Port operators should consult with port facility
operators and port service providers when completing a port security assessment. Port
facility operators and port service providers should also ensure they take into account
the findings of port security assessments when completing their own security
6 Identify the boundaries of the Security Regulated Ports and locations of
port facilities and other MIPS.
The Act at Section 49(3) also requires maritime security plans to be accompanied by
a map that covers the whole security regulated port. This will require port operators
to prepare a map to identify the boundaries of a security regulated port. Section 13 of
the Act states that the Secretary of DOTARS may, by written notice published in the
Gazette, declare that areas of a port intended for use either wholly or partly in
connection with the movement, loading, unloading, maintenance or provisioning of
security regulated ships are a security regulated port.
The security regulated port area is an important consideration for port operators as it
defines the area within which port security zones can be established by the Secretary
and the area for which there must be a maritime security plan. It is also expected that
the map outlining the boundaries of the security regulated port will identify the
boundaries of port facilities and port services providers within the port. To complete
these tasks, port operators will need to consult with port facility operators and port
service providers to determine the boundaries of their operations that are to be
security controlled. Port facility operators and port services providers are obliged to
assist port operators to complete this task and must provide certain information to
port operators such as the boundaries of areas under their security control. (See
regulations 3.15, 3.20 and 3.25)
7 Identify the location of Maritime Security Zones.
Port operators and port facility operators may outline in their security plans, by way
of a map, proposals for maritime security zones within the boundaries of a security
regulated port. Section 102 and 106 of the Act enables the Secretary to, by written
notice, establish port security zones within security regulated ports and ship
security zones around security regulated ships whilst in port. The Regulations will
set out requirements for different types of maritime security zones, such as land-side
restricted zones within port facilities, water-side restricted zones adjacent to berths
and moorings, cleared areas for screening and clearing of passengers and their
baggage, and exclusion zones to operate around ships. Port operators and port
facility operators must advise each other of proposals for the establishment of
maritime security zones within their respective maritime security plans including
measures used to inform persons of the location of zones and identification
procedures for authorisation of access.
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8 Prepare Maritime Security Plan.
Section 42 of the Act states that port operators, port facility operators and other MIPs
as prescribed in the regulations (such as port service providers) are required to have
maritime security plans. Sections 47, 48 and 49 of the Act list certain prescribed
content and form for maritime security plans and provide that the Regulations may
prescribe further content and form requirements. All maritime security plans must
include a security assessment, set out activities or measures to be undertaken at
maritime security levels 1, 2 and 3; include contact details of security officers; and
demonstrate that the implementation of the plan will make an appropriate
contribution towards the achievement of maritime security outcomes as set out in
sub-Section 3(4) of the Act. The Regulations also prescribe further requirements for
maritime security plans. The department has produced three guides to assist Port
Operators, Port Facility Operators and Port Service Providers in preparing maritime
9 Submit Plans for approval
Port operators, port facility operators and port service providers may submit maritime
security plans to the Secretary and request that their plans be considered for approval.
If the Secretary is satisfied that a maritime security plan adequately addresses the
specific requirements of the Act and Regulations then the Secretary must approve the
plan and give the MIP written notice of approval. An application form to be used by
port operators, port facility operators and port service providers who wish to submit
plans for approval will be available on the DOTARS website at
10 Implement Security Plans
Section 52 of the Act states that once the Secretary approves a maritime security
plan, the plan comes into force at the time specified in the notice of approval.
Maritime security plans should include information about the time required to
implement the plan to inform the Secretary in setting this date. The Regulations will
require that maritime security plans set out measures that have been implemented and
a schedule for implementing the measures that have not been implemented and any
interim arrangements. Once approved MIPs must implement their security plans
within agreed timeframes to comply with the requirements of their plans. Unless
they have a reasonable excuse, it will be an offence for a port operator, port facility
operator or port service provider to fail to comply with their approved security plan.
Sections 43 and 44 of the Act outline the offences operating without and failing to
comply with a security plan respectively.
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A BETTER PRACTICE FLOWCHART
FOR MARITIME SECURITY PLANS
Each Company or Statutory body responsible for
operations at a port covered by the Maritime
and Gazettes the
Transport Security Act (the Act) identifies itself to
DOTARS as the port operator.
The Port Operator contacts businesses operating in
Each MIP required
the port and determines which of them are Maritime
to submit a
Industry Participants (MIPs).
plan designates in
writing a person to
be the security The Port Operator forms a Port Security Committee
officer with each of the MIPs in the port and other key
stakeholders such as Police, Emergency Services,
Defence, Customs etc.
The Port Security Committee discusses the approach
to be taken within the port to ensure compliance with
the Act. The committee may determine those MIPs
that will require a security plan and agree who will be
covered either in the Maritime Security plan for the
into account the port
Port Operator or by individual maritime security plans.
The Port Operator completes a port security
Service Providers The Port Operator defines the boundaries of the
define their security security regulated port including where applicable
controlled each of the port facilities and port service provider
The Port Facility
Operator/Port Service The Port Operator identifies Maritime Security Zones to
Provider identifies any be considered for establishment by the Secretary.
Zones to be
considered for The Port Operator completes a Maritime Security Plan,
establishment by the and submits the plan to DOTARS for consideration
Secretary. and approval.
The Port Facility advises the
Operator/Port DOTARS Port Operator
Service Provider approves the plan DOTARS gazettes the to Implement.
completes a and advises the boundaries of the security
Security Plan, and Port Facility regulated port and
submits the plan to Operator/Port establishes the Maritime
DOTARS for Service Provider Security Zones.
consideration and to implement.
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