Conformité Européenne

When settling on a boat design, or a previously-owned boat, it’s important to determine where you will be taking that boat and whether it is designed/suited to that purpose. The Conformité Européenne, or European Conformity, is a set of standards set by the European Parliament (EP) to help qualify and quantify boat design and build safety.

The following CE Categories are set by the EP:

  • CE ‘A’ Ocean: Designed for extended voyages where conditions may exceed wind force 8 (Beaufort scale) and significant wave heights of 4 m and above but excluding abnormal conditions, and vessels largely self-sufficient
  • CE ‘B’ Offshore: Designed for offshore voyages where conditions up to, and including, wind force 8 and significant wave heights up to, and including, 4 m may be experienced
  • CE ‘C’ Inshore: Designed for voyages in coastal waters, large bays, estuaries, lakes and rivers where conditions up to, and including, wind force 6 and significant wave heights up to, and including, 2 m may be experienced
  • CE ‘D’ Sheltered Waters: Designed for voyages on sheltered coastal waters, small bays, small lakes, rivers and canals when conditions up to, and including, wind force 4 and significant wave heights up to, and including, 0,3 m may be experienced, with occasional waves of 0,5 m maximum height, for example from passing vessels

The U.S. government’s weather site is a great resource for the Beaufort Wind Scale

Watch without audio on; video never does reality justice in these situations

Another factor in determing a boat’s suitable CE Category is called the Angle of Vanishing Stability (AVS). This angle is the point which, once reached, the boat will capsize. The International Standards Organization (ISO) addresses this important calculation.

S/V Khepri’s designed AVS – ©  Jerome Delaunay

The S/V Khepri is designed with an AVS of 134 °.