About Kahlenberg UK

Kahlenberg UK Ltd is the European distributor for Kahlenberg Industries, Inc. providing full European support and local stock for Kahlenberg marine and industrial air horns, sound signals, controllers, air compressors and the company's other products.

Please contact us for further assistance at or on +44 (0)1635 35353

Sound signal legal requirements

IMO COLREGs bookWhile countries across Europe will have local laws that apply to ship and boat navigation, there is a common requirement worldwide for all leisure, commercial and military vessels to conform to the IMO International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea. As Steve Austin, Senior Policy Lead at the UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA) explains: "The COLREGs apply to all vessels, there is no differentiation between coded and non-coded vessels. Should the whistles prove not to conform then they will need to be modified or changed."

"Whistles should conform to the performance in COLREGs, Appendix III and the appropriate parts of IEC 60945 to EN60945 which deal with the marine operating environment."

All Kahlenberg products meet or exceed these requirements. Many other new and currently installed sound signals are non-compliant and might be breaching maritime law and invalidating insurance cover.

Safety advice for Kahlenberg horns

All Kahlenberg sound signals are built to comply with The 1972 International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea ('72 COLREGS), ANNEX III. This means they are capable of producing very high sound pressure levels.

Typical measurements are 123.5 dB (A) for the smallest horns in the range (the K-Series), 133 dB (A) for the D-0A and 138 dB (A) for the D1, all measured at 1m distance from the trumpet. These sound pressure levels will be considerably higher if sampled at closer range. Larger units also produce much higher volumes again.

Kahlenberg UK recommends that horns are installed and operated as per the recommendations in the COLREGS.

We have produced a safety guidance note which contains precautionary advice and links to further reading. Download Safety advice for Kahlenberg horns here

Further information

Call Kahlenberg UK now on +44 (0)1635 35353 or email