Continuous Synopsis Record (CSR)

When the International Ship and Port Security Code was adopted on 12 December 2002, a new Regulation 5 was added to Chapter XI-1 of SOLAS 1974, as amended, requiring vessels to maintain on board a CSR containing specific information regarding the history of the vessel’s ownership, management, flag, and authority responsible for issuance of certificates. The information must be updated when it changes. Recent amendments to Chapter XI-1, Reg 5 require the addition of the IMO Unique Registered Owner and Company Identification Numbers on all new CSRs issued after 1 January 2009. 


1. This requirement applies to:

- Passenger ships, including high-speed passenger craft;

Cargo ships, including high-speed craft, of 500 gross tonnage and upwards; and

- Self Propelled Mobile offshore drilling units (MODU).

2. It does not apply to:

- Government-operated ships used for non-commercial purposes;

- Cargo ships of less than 500 gross tonnage as measured by the Administration or the ITC 69, whichever is the lesser;

- Ships not propelled by mechanical means;

- Wooden craft of primitive origins;

- Private pleasure yachts not engaged in trade; and

- Fishing vessels.

2.0 CSR File

2.1 All ships required to have a CSR shall maintain on board a permanent CSR file containing all previously issued CSR Documents.

2.2 A ship’s CSR File is comprised of:

2.2.1 All Continuous Synopsis Records issued to the vessel numbered sequentially for the life of the ship;

2.2.2 All Amendment Forms attached to each individual CSR relating to changes made to that CSR; and

2.2.3 All Indexes of Amendments listing all amendments (specified by Amendment Forms) relating to each CSR and attached to the CSR.

2.3 We recommend that the CSR File be maintained in a binder in chronological order. The Flag Administrations maintain a copy of the ship’s CSR file so that a certified copy may be transferred intact to a new flag Administration on change of flag or replaced on board the ship should the CSR be lost or destroyed.

2.4 A vessel’s CSR file may be inspected by Port State Control Officers and other authorized persons.

3.0 Continuous Synopsis Record (CSR)

3.1 Only an Administration may issue a CSR to a ship; a sample copy of the CSR is in Appendix 1 of this Notice. The first CSR issued to a ship is numbered “1,” and subsequent CSRs will be sequentially numbered regardless of the Administration.  

3.2 Each original CSR shall be sent to the ship and kept by the ship throughout its lifetime. The Administration will keep a copy of each CSR it issued to the ship.

3.3 Whenever a CSR is issued to a ship, the Administration will provide all information in blocks 1 to 15. If the information is not applicable, it will be labeled N/A. For example, the information regarding a vessel’s entry in the CSR as a bareboat charter registration is only to be completed when the ship is actually bareboat chartered into the registry.  

3.4 If the ship is bareboat charter registered, the bareboat charterer will need to provide this Administration with the name and address of the owner listed on the Certificate of Registry and their IMO Unique Number from the underlying flag so the information may be listed in the block on the CSR for the owner.

3.5 If there is more than one entity listed as an owner of the ship, each such entity, their address and their IMO Unique Numbers will also be listed on the CSR.

3.6 If there is more than one entity that is party to the bareboat charter, each such entity and their address will be listed on the CSR.

4.0 Amendments and Indexes completed by the Company or the Master

4.1 When any change relating to the entries listed in the CSR issued to the ship have taken place, this change (or changes) shall be included on the CSR Amendment form, Appendix II. The Company’s Representative or Master shall complete the Amendment Form, Appendix III, in pen and ink and the Master shall attach the original to the vessel’s current CSR file. The CSR file on board the ship shall be maintained in chronological order.  

4.2 The details of the amendment shall be entered in the Index of Amendments, Appendix III, in the ship’s CSR file. A copy of the Amendment form and the revised Index of Amendments page shall be forwarded to the Administration. This will allow the Administration to confirm that it has a complete copy of the ship’s CSR file and expedite the issuance of a revised and updated CSR. The person completing the amendment may also send a copy to the company operating the vessel in accordance with company procedures.

5.0 In case of loss of, or damage to, any ship’s CSR File

In case the CSR is lost or damaged, the Company and/or Master shall contact the Administration in writing without delay, listing the papers (pages) which were lost or damaged. The Administration will provide certified copies of the CSR s, CSR Amendment Forms and Index of Amendments available in its files.

6.0 Verification and Correcting Errors

The Administration’s Inspectors will examine the CSRs during the Annual Safety Inspection and will contact the Administration should any errors be identified in order to correct the record.

(This article is for informational purposes only.)

Source: LISCR - Marine Notice ISP-002 Rev. 06/12


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