Determining the seaworthiness of a ship and ensuring safety is extremely important in the maritime industry. And to do so, periodic surveys and inspections are extremely important. Marine laws are becoming stringent and with every passing year, ships and vessels have to undergo a series of inspections and assessments to meet the minimum requirements set to continue sailing.
A Ship officer is responsible for safe navigation of the ship, cargo loading, passage planning, ship stability, maintenance of deck and hull equipment, etc. Being a ship officer entails being competent for a vast variety of roles. Thus, it also becomes essential for the deck officer to know which kinds of ship inspections are carried out to ensure the safety and seaworthiness of any given vessel.
In this blog, we are going to discuss some of the most common ship surveys that a Ship officer must be aware of.
For any vessel to continue its trading, it requires certifications and periodic surveys which are mandatory to ensure compliance with international regulations. Class surveyor verifies whether the functioning, conditions, and maintenance requirements of the ship are in compliance with the regulatory standards.
Dry Dock Surveys
These surveys or inspections are an extensive form of the annual survey. In this, several functional aspects, operational aspects, and maintenance routines of the vessel equipment are verified. These surveys are carried out by the classification surveyor. Shipowners sometimes appoint an independent Dry-dock supervision superintendent for managing the project on behalf of the shipowner.
Safety Construction Survey
This is more focused on the structural strength of the ship. In this, any kind of excessive corrosion of the hull or deck is checked. In addition to that, the condition of watertight doors, drainage systems, bilge pumping, portable or fixed fire-fighting equipment, and fire protection equipment is checked.
Load Line Survey
Load line survey is carried out before the load line assignment to the vessel during which the structural strength of a vessel is checked for the availability of any cracks or deformation in the hull. There can be the possibility of openings like hatches, machinery space openings, or any other deck opening which otherwise should be watertight which are ensured in load line survey.
Cargo Ship Safety Equipment Survey
This survey pertains to the management of the onboard safety system. Survival craft launching instructions, lifejacket donning, muster lists, muster stations should be updated and posted in respective locations.
Terminal Safety Inspections
To ascertain the safety operations as per the terminal requirements, terminal safety inspections are carried out. If there is any deficiency found out during this inspection might result in vessel rejection. In case of any adverse remarks, the terminal may even blacklist the ship from further calls or operations.
These are some of the many ship inspections that a deck officer must be aware of at all times. In addition to the ones mentioned above, there are Internal Audits, Port State Inspections, and External Safety Audits which a deck officer should know about.
Every company that offers ship inspection services verifies the condition and maintenance requirements of the vessel to find out its seaworthiness. It is the audits carried out by professionals that verify whether the ship is in a state to sail or not. Audits carried out by the ship inspection companies enable the shipboard management to take the necessary steps for the maintenance of the ship equipment.
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