How to provide mandatory vessel reporting information to the MCA

MCA’s role in promoting safety at sea through vessel traffic monitoring and guidance on reporting requirements for vessels arriving in UK ports.


This guidance tells you which information must be provided when a vessel arrives at a UK port. This information includes:

  • Notification of entry into port
  • Notification of carriage of dangerous and polluting goods
  • Notification of ship generated waste and cargo residues
  • Notification of security information

Revised reporting processes for gathering this information start on 1st April 2017 and are described in Marine Information Note 540.

Consolidated European Reporting System (CERS)

The MCA uses CERS to collect this information and send it to the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA).

Port authorities can send this information by logging into the Web User Interface (UI) for CERS.

Some ports have enabled their own traffic management systems to send this information by linking directly to CERS. These ports do not use the CERS UI.

Port authorities can access the CERS UI here

The CERS Workbook

Vessels and shipping agents should use the CERS Workbook to provide the information needed to the port authority, and Port Facility Security Officers (PFSO) and terminal operators when appropriate.

A version with reduced file size is available for vessels with restricted internet access here.

Users should note that the MCA recommends the full size version is used wherever possible.

The current CERS Workbooks are Version 1.2.3

Consolidated European Reporting System Advice Notes (CERSAN)

CERSANs are published by the MCA to pass operational guidance to the CERS user community on using CERS effectively. CERSANs will be used where the operational guidance is technical in nature or when information needs to be distributed to users quickly.

The current list of active CERSANs is available here

CERS Satisfaction Survey Results

In April 2018, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency issued a Satisfaction Survey designed to garner feedback about the Consolidated European Reporting System (CERS) and its associated processes. This report looks at the responses received and offers some solutions and suggestions based on the industry feedback. The report can be accessed here

Further guidance

Detailed guidance on entry into port and carriage of dangerous and polluting goods information which needs to be reported can be found in Merchant Shipping Notice 1831. Information on reporting exemptions can be found in Marine Guidance Note 438

Detailed guidance on ship generated waste and cargo residues information which needs to be reported can be found in Marine Guidance Note 563. Information on reporting exemptions can also be found in this note.

Published 25 January 2017
Last updated 6 February 2019 + show all updates
  1. CERS workbook version number updated.

  2. New section on CERS satisfaction surveys results added

  3. updated link

  4. Updated text to include link to CERSAN

  5. Link for MIN 540 updated.

  6. Updated links and texts

  7. Updated links

  8. First published.