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Further to a note I sent to Roadkilt about a different MMSI number to mine for a ship namely Athens HIghway MMSI 370121000. His was 432930000. I googled both numbers and came up with same IMO number. Strange.

I ask Lloyds of London about this and they said the MMSI Roadkilt used was the correct number. This was because Athens Highway has changed flag from Panama to Japanese. This amendment will be in Lloyds register when they update their site. The call sign has also changed to 7JPL.

So apparently they say you should not identify a ship by the MMSI number as this changes frequently by Flag change and a ship should only be identified by the IMO number.

The first three number of an MMSI number identify the Flag. How you find that out I am not sure.

So do we still identify a ship by MMSi or IMO numbers that stay with the ship till it dies.

Smaller vessels are harder to find an IMO as we all know, and MMSI numbers are always readily available but can change.

Whats your choice. 

Graham Alton

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I did mention to Mark Daniels a while ago that the IMO no. is the only constant for a ship, being allocated at build and staying with the ship throughout its life. It also has to be prominently displayed on the vessel.

It is confusing when you find the MMSI number and tag to ship finder. Then you see the ship in the App and try see your photos and that of others, just to find it is not there because the MMSI number is not the one used.

Interesting post Graham, like Jack mentioned having your photo

knocked back because the MMSI  number dont fit


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