Recreational Craft Directive
The Recreational Craft Directive ( RCD ) is a trade-enabling
European New Approach Directive
which sets minimum requirements of a boat which guarantee its
suitability for sale and use within the European
The RCD is currently under revision and members can
access further details here.
The requirements, known as Essential Safety Requirements (ESR)
cover all aspects of the boat from identification marks to strength
of construction, stability and handling, from gas, electric and
fuel system installations to owner’s documentation.
Boats built to comply with the RCD are CE-marked and carry an
identification mark known as the Craft Identification Number (CIN)
and a Builder’s Plate which shows the CE-mark and basic information
about the design of the boat, particularly the category(ies) for
which it is was designed. There are four categories (A, B, C &
D) which are based on wind and wave conditions likely to be
experienced covering Ocean, Offshore, Coastal and Sheltered
Compliance with the ESRs can be shown in a number of ways,
depending on the design category and size of boat. Boats in design
categories A & B and the larger boats in category C will be
built with some involvement of a third party
Notified Body, which monitors and checks the design and
construction. Boats in category D and smaller boats in category C
are self-certified by the builder. In all instances there are a
range of industry codes and standards,
(national, European and International) to which boats are
usually built, however only European
harmonised standards give a presumption of conformity.
The RCD (Directive
94/25/EC) was implemented in the UK as the Recreational
Craft Regulations (SI 1996/1353) and came into force on 16 June
1998.The RCD was amended in 2005 (Directive
2003/44/EC) to include environmental emission limits – this
was implemented in the UK as Recreational Craft
Regulations (SI 2004/1464) combining both the original
directive and the text of the amendment.
The British Marine Federation has published several guides and
handbooks for the RCD, including the Boatbuilders
Guide which is available to both members and non-members.
There are a number of additional supporting documents published
by the Notified Bodies’ Recreational Craft Sectoral Group (RSG)
European Commission (EC).
ISO Standard Revisions
To view a list of ISO standards
currently under revision please click here.
Because of our recognised expertise in the leisure marine
sector, we also manage the Manufacturer’s Identity Codes (MIC)
register on behalf of the Department for Business, Innovation and
Skills (BIS) and represent the marine industry in national and
international standards development.