COF & LGSC

COF & LGSC

The safety requirements for a Certificate of Fitness (COF) or a Local General Safety Certificate (LGSC) are specified in the Merchant Shipping (National Small Vessel Safety) Regulations of 2007 as amended. Most of the safety requirements for pleasure vessels are detailed in Annexure 1 and 2 of these regulations.

Click here for a complete copy of these regulations in PDF format.

Note that the regulations specify minimum requirements. For example, the regulations allow you to cross an ocean without:

arrow A GPS or chartplotter or sextant to fix your position
arrow A log to allow you to maintain workable DR
arrow A depth sounder to warn you of an approaching coastline
arrow An SSB radio or sat phone for mid ocean communication in a medical or other emergency
arrow Jackstays and harnesses to allow crew to clip on when working on the foredeck at night or in bad weather

It is up to the skipper to decide what additional equipment is appropriate and affordable for any particular voyage. The World Sailing Offshore Special Regulations provide a useful reference.

Click here to download the World Sailing Offshore Special Regulations 2016-2017

To get a COF your vessel has to be listed with South African Sailing (SAS) and inspected by an SAS Safety Officer or a "SAMSA approved SAS appointed Safety Surveyor" (referred to as a SAS Safety Surveyor).

To get a LGSC your vessel has to be listed with SAS, registered by SAMSA and inspected by a SAS Safety Surveyor.

To book an inspection your first step is to pay SAS for the survey. Click here to view the pricelist. The easiest way to do this is via electronic funds transfer (EFT) to the following SAS bank account:

Standard Bank, Thibault Square
Branch No: 02-09-09
Account No: 07-088-302-5

Please use your vessel's listing number (the SA or ZA number) as your reference so that we can identify the payment and print out proof of payment for your safety officer.

Once payment has been made you can arrange a survey with a Safety Officer or Safety Surveyor. If that is not convenient the SAS office can appoint one for you. You will need a proof of payment and your Certificate of Listing or a certified copy thereof.

You will also need to decide what category of COF you want for your boat. Then download the safety inspection check sheet. You need to complete the safety inspection check sheet before the safety survey.

Download the safety inspection check sheet appropriate to your sailing vessel
arrow Category A - Recreational sailing vessel operating any distance from shore
arrow Category B - Recreational sailing vessel operating less than 40 nautical miles from shore
arrow Category C - Recreational sailing vessel operating less than 15 nautical miles from shore
arrow Category D - Recreational sailing vessel operating less than 5 nautical miles from shore
arrow Category E - Recreational sailing vessel operating not more than 1 nautical mile from shore and 15 nautical miles from an approved launch site
arrow Category R - Recreational sailing vessel operating solely on sheltered waters


Download the safety inspection check sheet appropriate to your power driven vessel
arrow Category A - Recreational power driven vessel operating any distance from shore
arrow Category B - Recreational power driven vessel operating less than 40 nautical miles from shore
arrow Category C - Recreational power driven vessel operating less than 15 nautical miles from shore
arrow Category D - Recreational power driven vessel operating less than 5 nautical miles from shore
arrow Category E - Recreational power driven vessel operating not more than 1 nautical mile from shore and 15 nautical miles from an approved launch site
arrow Category R - Recreational power driven vessel operating solely on sheltered waters


COFs and LGSCs are only valid for one year from the date of the safety inspection.