As per SOLAS chapter chapter II-1 , regulation 21
1.1 An efficient bilge pumping system shall be provided, capable of pumping from and draining any watertight compartment other than a space permanently appropriated for the carriage of fresh water, water ballast, oil fuel or liquid cargo and for which other efficient means of pumping are provided, under all practical conditions. Efficient means shall be provided for draining water from insulated holds.
1.2 Sanitary, ballast and general service pumps may be accepted as independent power bilge pumps if fitted with the necessary connections to the bilge pumping system.
1.3 All bilge pipes used in or under coal bunkers or fuel storage tanks or in boiler or machinery spaces, including spaces in which oil-settling tanks or oil fuel pumping units are situated, shall be of steel or other suitable material.
1.4 The arrangement of the bilge and ballast pumping system shall be such as to prevent the possibility of water passing from the sea and from water ballast spaces into the cargo and machinery spaces, or from one compartment to another. Provision shall be made to prevent any deep tank having bilge and ballast connections being inadvertently flooded from the sea when containing cargo, or being discharged through a bilge pump when containing water ballast.
1.5 All distribution boxes and manually operated valves in connection with the bilge pumping arrangements shall be in positions which are accessible under ordinary circumstances.
1.6 Provision shall be made for the drainage of enclosed cargo spaces situated on the bulkhead deck of a passenger ship and on the freeboard deck of a cargo ship, provided that the Administration may permit the means of drainage to be dispensed with in any particular compartment of any ship or class of ship if it is satisfied that by reason of size or internal subdivision of those spaces the safety of the ship is not thereby impaired.