What is Interco or International Code of Signal and its purpose & content?

The International Code of Signals (ICS) is an international system of signals and codes for use by vessels to communicate important messages regarding safety of navigation and related matters. Signals can be sent by flag hoist, signal lamp (“blinker”), flag semaphore, radiotelegraphy, and radiotelephony. 

The purpose of the International Code of Signals is to provide ways and means of communication in situations related essentially to safety of navigation and persons, especially when language difficulties arise. It has done this by first establishing a standardized alphabet (the letters A to Z and the ten digits), along with a spoken form of each letter (to avoid confusing similar sounding letters, such as ‘b’, ‘p’, and ‘v’), and associating this alphabet with standardized flags.

Interco is published by her majesties stationery office-london The book used for this synopsis is: edition 1969

Contents of Interco:
Chapter I: Signalling Instructions

Section 1: Explanation and General remarks
Section 2: Definitions
Section 3: Methods of Signalling
Section 4: General Instructions
Section 5: Flag Signalling
Section 6: Flashing Light Signalling
Section 7: Sound Signalling
Section 8: Radio  Telephony
Section 9: Morse Signalling By Hand Flags Or Arms
Section 10: Morse Symbols-Phonetic Tables- Procedure Signals

1. Single letter signals
2. Single letter signals with complements
3. Single Letter Signals between Icebreaker And   Assisted Vessels
4. Identification of medical transport in armed conflicts and permanent identification of rescue crafts.

To remember the contents in the first section make note of the following Sentence:

“Every Day Must Go For Fun, Somehow Request Mother Mary  Send Some Sweets Immediately”

Chapter II: General Signal Code

Section 1: Distress – Emergency
Section 2: Casualities – Damages
Section 3: Aids to Navigation- Navigation-Hydrography
Section 4: Maneuvers
Section 5: Miscellaneous
Section 6: Meteorology
Section 7: Routing of Ships
Section 8:Communications
Section 9: International Health Regulations
Section 10: Tables of Complement

To remember the contents of the general section use the sentence:

 “Do come and meet my mother, report certainly in time

Chapter III: Medical Signal Code

Section 1: Explanation And Instructions
Section 2: Request For Medical Assistance
Section 3: Medical Advice
Section 4: Tables Of Complements

Chapter IV:  Distress and Lifesaving Signals and Radiotelephone Procedures

Section 1: Distress Signals
Section 2: Table Of Lifesaving Signals
Section 3: Radiotelephone Procedures

Download: INTERCO, EDITION 1969


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