US-British Pact Will Ensure Wider Use of Installation Standard

SEVERNA PARK, MD-The National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA) in conjunction with the International Marine Electronics Association (IMEA) has signed an agreement with the British Marine Federation (BMF) and the British Marine Electronics Association (BMEA) to jointly develop international criteria for technicians that will ensure proper application of the NMEA Installation Standard in Great Britain. Specifically, the unprecedented agreement calls on the groups to work together to:
–Make the UK and US qualifications for marine electronics installers more alike in order to create an internationally recognized Installation Standard.
–“Europeanize” the NMEA Installation Standard so that it is suited for the UK and the rest of Europe.
–Implement NMEA educational /training courses, examinations and qualifications within the UK.
–Develop joint marketing, training materials and branding of the Installation Standard.
–Participate in each other’s conferences.
Significantly, the marine trade associations also agree to work together to promote closer business relations between the United Kingdom and the United States.
NMEA developed the Installation Standard, which is formally called NMEA 0400, to provide a methodology that yields consistent and professional results in the installation of marine electronics. The voluntary guidelines are published to aid electronics installers, technicians, electricians, surveyors, owners and others who install, service or modify the installation of electronics, electrical systems or other associated peripherals. The intended application of NMEA 0400 is for vessels that will use large and sophisticated systems of marine electronics for communication and navigation purposes.

“This agreement is the culmination of discussions that go back at least two years,” said David Hayden, President and Executive Director of NMEA. “Our goal is to ensure that the Installation Standard is used properly in the UK by establishing qualifications for the technicians who will use it. The result will be equipment and networks that perform at the highest level possible, adding value and an extra margin of safety for vessel owners. We’re looking forward to working closely with our British colleagues on a project that will benefit everyone.”
“We are delighted to be able to provide internationally recognised training and qualifications for our members in the electronics sector,” said BMF Director of Business Development Sarah Dhanda.

“Training and professional development have been key objectives for the BMEA over the last three years,” said BMEA Chairman Paul Holland. ” Our BMET examination scheme had been well received, but had no training element. Joining forces with the NMEA allows us to offer combined training and certification as well as ensuring that the standards are international. It has been a pleasure working with the team at the NMEA who have been very positive about the project.”
NMEA’s membership is primarily US-based marine electronics dealers and manufacturers, along with boat builders and other companies that provide marine products and services. NMEA created IMEA as a separate trade association. It is dedicated to promoting worldwide training, education, safety and standards for the marine electronics industry.
BMF is the trade association for the leisure, superyacht and small commercial marine industry. BMEA, an association within BMF, has a membership that is similar to that of NMEA.
Founded in 1957, the NMEA has led the way in establishing technical standards for data exchange in marine electronics, with the widely accepted NMEA 0183 data protocol, NMEA 2000® and certification standards for marine electronics technicians. NMEA standards and programs focus on insuring that the boating consumer is provided reliable products and professional service. For more information, visit the NMEA website at or call (410) 975-9425.
By Professional Mariner Staff