Type of Vessel Inspection and Surveys

Maritime Inspection and survey Nigeria

Insurance Survey, Delivery Inspection (Q-Terminal)

Insurance survey is a comprehensive inspection of a boat to its condition and value. Insurance survey helps the insurance company identify any issues that could lead to an imminent claim and it also helps to set the value of the boat the insurance company uses on the policy.

Insurance surveyors assess ships for insurance and P&I purposes; in an insurance claim, they can be hired by the company or the claimant. Insurance companies hire surveyors to estimate damage and determine whether it falls under valid insurance claims ; the claimant could also hire a surveyor to carry out a private inquiry, this report may be used in a maritime court. Most times both parties invite an independent surveyor for an unbiased assessment from a third party( an insurance company cannot force a surveyor on a claimant, it is illegal.)

Delivery Inspection is similar to pre purchase survey. It is done prior to accepting a boat from a manufacturer or dealer, it checks whether the boat has been completed or delivered in accordance with the specifications agreed upon at the time of ordering.

The report includes a list of items requiring attention before delivery and recommendations on how to equip the boat for its intended use.


Condition Surveys

                            Vessel Survey in Lagos Nigeria  

This is a thorough survey of a vessel to report the condition- the extent and nature of defects found.

The report include the Description of Vessel and its main particulars gotten from plans and documents on board or supplied by the vessels Master.

The areas surveyed include:

The bridge navigation and communication equipment’s used, the vessel’s accommodation.

The ship’s hull which includes the plates, draught marks, type of rudder and propeller and bow thruster.

The State of the main deck areas which constitutes of the deck plating, railings, mast house structures, air vents etc.

The State of the cargo tanks, ballast tanks, chain lockers, deck store rooms.

The Safety and fire-fighting equipment’s

Then an honest report is prepared to describe the vessel’s condition from the inspection.

Valuation of Assets

This is the process Of assessing the present value of a company’s assets, such as stocks, buildings, equipment, brands etc.

 This process is usually conducted as part of a wider business valuation, or before you buy, sell or insure an asset. Asset-based valuation allows you to calculate a business’s net worth by adding up the current value of its assets minus the value of its liabilities.

A shipping company assets are it’s vessels, they could have an in house marine surveyor whose job is to assess the fleet to determine its value or they could hire an independent surveyor to do it for them.

Suitability Surveys for Voyage, Tow, Purpose Trip.

This is an independent assessment of the condition of parts of a vessel to make dure it is fit for purpose. The vessel’s internal construction and general condition are inspected to determine its suitability for the proposed voyage or operations, reporting any defect or deficiency.

Suitability surveys are generally carried out for insurers to assess the “cargo-worthiness” of vessels for high value cargo critical, chartered vessels, vessels under consideration for charter, that fall outside of insurance policy conditions.

Damage, Collusion, Pollution and Fire

This is the Survey done to assess the extent of the damage sustained by a vessel on the hull, rig, systems, or elsewhere on the vessel. A vessel damage survey report includes probable causes of the damage, recommendations on repairs, and estimated costs for repair. Usually surveyors are hired by insurance companies to investigate claims but Sometimes a boat owner can hire a surveyor to investigate unusual degradation or damage, especially on newer boats.

On/Off Hire Survey

An On-Hire survey is carried out to record the physical condition of the vessel at the time of it being delivered into a charter. On-hire survey includes the verification of bunker left on board a vessel at the time of delivery into charters so that on re-delivery to owner, the quantity will be near same as start of the charter.

The inspection includes:

Ship’s Hull

Condition of the main deck area

Weather deck hatch covers & openings

Cargo Gear & securing equipment

Cargo compartments dry & Liquid


Internal structures

Living & working conditions

Off-hire survey is just like the on-hire survey but in reverse. All areas surveyed during the On-Hire are reexamined with the addition of damage & incident reports, bunker survey, full condition survey and assessment of equipment and maintenance system updates.

Draft Displacement Surveys

This is the measurement of the initial weight (displacement) of a vessel and the final weight (displacement) of the ship after loading, the difference plus all the weights that were taken out will be the cargo loaded.

Draft survey is used to know the weight of solid cargo, with liquid cargo the measurement of cargo quantity is simple using the density of the cargo and the volume but for cargo like coal, the weight cannot be measured like that because solid cargoes don’t take the shape of the hold unlike liquid; draft survey is the most appropriate way to calculate it.

Draft survey can also be used to measure the quantity of some liquid cargo like molasses loaded on chemical tankers because it has air in it and the density is not uniform.

Marine Incident Investigation

This is detailed and systematic examination and investigation of marine accidents involving ships and other marine crafts to determine the cause of the accident and to suggest measures to prevent such accidents in futur

Marine accident investigators have both national and international professional organizations.

IMO requires all flag states of their registered ships to investigate and report serious marine accidents.

National Administration usually assign their professional investigators conduct marine accident investigation by interview of witnesses, collect evidences and data for accident analysis, the probable causes and findings of the accident are concluded and recommendation are suggested to prevent future occurrence of similar accident in the final accident investigation report for public.

Voyage Data Recorders (VDR) are now installed on most of the oceangoing vessels according to the IMO requirement, VDR have made a substantial contribution to the understanding of accident causes and the improvement of safety. Recorded data has enabled accident investigators to reconstruct events to identify precisely what went wrong and to ensure that effective, rather than convenient, more reliable recommendations can be made to prevent the same thing happening again from the correct lessons learned.

How do you become a marine surveyor? Although qualifications for marine surveying are not regulated, it is advantageous to study specialized courses, education to become knowledgeable and respected or one can decide to train by apprenticing in the field. Typically you need a diploma or a B.sc in marine surveying or a related field. Some maritime institutions offer marine surveying courses or you can take formal apprenticeship programs that combine classroom instruction and on the job training. Most marine surveyors obtain Recognition as a Marine Surveyor from the International Institute of Marine Surveying (IIMS) to remain competitive in the field.

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