Classifications of Marine Surveyors

Marine surveyor is the title awarded to qualified individuals who have passed and completed all necessary examinations that enables them to conduct surveys, examinations, and inspections within the marine industry. Typically, a marine surveyor will be enlisted to perform surveys or inspections for vessels, marine structures, and vessel equipment to ensure standards are met.

Types of marine surveyors

The basic duties of a marine surveyor is to conduct detailed reports, surveys and inspections, on vessels, vessel equipment and marine structures, in an effort to ensure all applicable maritime safety standards are met, and certification is awarded.

There are several categories that can be used to classify marine surveyors according to their area of specialism. There is no restriction on marine surveyors as to the area of specialism or industry they wish to focus on and it is common for marine insurance companies, vessel owners and marine companies to enlist the services of a particular category of marine surveyor depending on their needs.

The following types of marine surveyor categories are the most commonly known;

  • Government surveyor
  • Classification surveyor
  • Private surveyor
  • Yacht and small craft surveyor

Government surveyor – this type of surveyor is responsible for conducting ship registration surveys, ensuring ship safety standards are implemented and enforced, performing surveys on foreign and local ships, and ensuring marine industrial safety measures are complied with. A government marine surveyor is commonly referred to as a marine inspector.

Classification surveyor – this category of surveyor is responsible for inspecting ships, the equipment, and components on ships and all related machinery to ensure certification and safety standards are met in accordance with the class of vessel. A classification surveyor has 2 primary focuses; to represent a classification society, and to inspect vessels on behalf of the flag state which the vessel is registered with.

Private surveyor – this is a popular category of marine surveyors and such qualified individuals are tasked with performing a broad spectrum of tasks. These include,; examining cargoes, investigating marine incidents, investigating machinery failure and preparing accident reports for marine insurance purposes.

Yacht and small craft surveyor – commonly abbreviated as Y&SC surveyor, is responsible for marine surveys, conducting of investigations and performing examinations for small vessels that are typically used for personal use as opposed to commercial or industrial use. Usually a Y&SC surveyor is independent but employed by marine insurance companies.