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International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL)

This act regulates the disposal of garbage into the sea and prohibits the disposal of plastics into the waters. It requires governments to ensure that there are facilities at ports and terminals for the reception of garbage. It also addresses bilge water, oil pollution, and other discharges from cruise ships.

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(See endnote 42)

The International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea was first adopted in 1914 as a result of the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. Cruise ships are put in the same category as cargo ships for this international agreement. It was determined that seafaring was one of the most dangerous occupations with numerous deaths from maritime disasters, illnesses, suicides, homicides, and occupational accidents. Most of the incidents (approximately 80%) are due to human error. The main purpose for this convention is to establish minimum standards of construction for all parts of passenger ships including watertight compartments, safe electrical systems and machinery, fire protection and detection equipment, communications equipment, etc.

 
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