Sea Pollution Act 1991

Refusal of entry of ships into harbour or State.


23.(1) A harbour-master may refuse entry into the harbour over which he has control to a ship which he has reasonable cause to believe—

(a) does not comply with the requirements of this Act, or

(b) would cause a serious threat of damage to flora or fauna, living marine resources, the harbour or other ships,

unless the entry of the ship is necessary for the purpose of saving life.

(2) Where the Minister or a person appointed by the Minister under subsection (4) to act on his behalf is satisfied that a ship is a ship to which paragraph (a) or (b) of subsection (1) relates, he may, in his absolute discretion, by direction prohibit the entry of the ship into the State or into a harbour or require the ship to leave the State or a harbour and, in either case, to comply with such conditions as may be specified.

(3) If a harbour-master has refused entry under subsection (1), the Minister, or a person appointed by him under subsection (4) to act on his behalf, may direct the harbour-master to permit the ship to enter, and to comply with such conditions as may be specified by the Minister or the person appointed under subsection (4), following consultation with the harbour-master, in which case the harbour-master shall permit the ship to enter the harbour upon such conditions, and the master of the ship shall comply with those conditions.

(4) The Minister may by warrant appoint a person to act on his behalf for the purposes of subsections (2) and (3) and that person shall be furnished with a warrant and, when exercising a function under this section, shall, if requested, produce the warrant for inspection.

(5) The Minister may by regulations provide, in respect of ships generally or ships of any prescribed class, for—

(a) the giving by the owner or master of a ship of notice of the entry or intended entry of the ship into the State and of its passage and destination while in the State and such other information relating to the ship and its cargo as may be prescribed;

(b) preventing the entry of a ship or of a ship carrying a specified cargo into the State if he has reasonable cause to believe it will cause serious threat of hazards to human health, damage to human life, harm to living marine resources, or harm to flora or fauna, or damage to amenities, or interference with legitimate uses of the sea.

(6) The owner, the master and any person who fails to comply with a direction, or the requirements of regulations, under this section shall be guilty of an offence.