The President’s Corner
April, 2017


Wow! What a great National Conference in San Diego. More than 70 NAMSGlobal members, a few non-members, and a couple of ‘members to be’ enjoyed excellent presentations on multiple facets of the marine surveying world and provided the nucleus for extended discussion and networking. It was a great time to connect and expand your professionalism; not to mention that all received 12 hours’ credit toward recertification. Following the conference on Tuesday afternoon, Marine Group Boat Works hosted about 45 members and guests to their main yard in Chula Vista, California. Marine Group Boat Works is a leader in green shipbuilding and repair. I’d like to thank Mr. Todd Roberts of MGBW for hosting us and his continuing support of NAMSGlobal.

NAMSGlobal Board of Directors met on Sunday before the conference opening event Sunday evening. The BOD addressed several matters important to NAMSGlobal and its members. First, the board approved 14 new members and accepted the resignation or retirement of 11 members. This is a small step in increasing membership. In a related move, the board also approved revised membership requirements defined in a matrix format and a revised application form reflecting these requirements. The aim of the redefined requirements is to streamline the application process in order to reduce the time from application to approval by the board of qualified applicants. In addition, the board recognized the degree programs in Marine Surveying from Lloyds Maritime Academy in association with North West Kent College and the Masters of Surveying conducted in association with Middlesex University in the UK as being an alternative to the CMS test. Applicants who have obtained this independent alternative college level degree in Marine Surveying and meet all other requirements for NAMSGlobal CMS level membership and pass the ethics test, will be certified without having to sit for the NAMS Global CMS exam.

The Board approved the NAMS Marine Warranty Survey Discipline. Steve Weiss reported that the program was moving along well and that a testing protocol would be ready in the next few months. With this Board approval, we will soon begin testing and certifying members and new members in this discipline.

Finally, the board voted to approve the expansion of the NAMSGlobal General Liability Insurance program to include Associate Members. Our insurance carrier for this coverage agreed to accept up to 20 NAMS Associate Members under the cover without increasing our overall premium. Dues for Associate Members were raised accordingly. Finally, Matthew Knoll was elected the new National Treasurer to replace outgoing treasurer David Pereira.

Our next National Conference will be held early next spring on the Gulf Coast with proposed venues from Houston to Tampa.

Remember, each time you sign a letter, report, or email and include the “NAMS-CMS” moniker, you are representing the professionalism that is NAMSGlobal and that professionalism is based in knowledge, and that knowledge is based on continued learning.

Learn Something New and Share Your Knowledge Everyday!

Applicant List

Applicant Applying for Region Sponsored by
Joki Pekka NAMS-CMS W. Gulf Steve Weiss
Michael Allen NAMS-CMS Eastern Canada David Pereira
Gerald Nielsen NAMS-CMS W. Gulf David Pereira
Jason Brueck NAMS-ASSOCIATE Great Lakes Bill Duval

New MEMBERS Elected 30 September 2016

Applicant Applying for Region Sponsored by
Anthony Anselmi NAMS-CMS
E. Gulf Tim Anselmi
Robert Keister NAMS-CMS
E. Gulf Conrad Breit
Tim Callahan NAMS-CMS
E. Gulf Mohammed Zaheer, C. J. Brustowkz,
David Pereira
Robert Paine NAMS-CMS
Y&S Craft
New England Jonathan Klopman
W. Gulf Ralph Perera
Maqsood Kazi NAMS-CMS
W. Gulf Ralph Perera
John Zenmanek NAMS-CMS
W. Gulf Bill Duval
Seth Mosley NAMS-CMS
W. Gulf Dick Frenzel, Richard Schiehl, Mathew Knoll

Top of Page <#NAMSGlobal>

CMS members retiring

Applicant Applying for Region
Thomas H. Smith Retiring New England
Ted Crosby Retiring South Atlantic
Michael Pickthorne Retiring Gr. Lakes
Robert Drew Retiring New England
Lorne Gould Retiring – ELECTED LIFE MEMBER Central Pacific
Michael McGlenn Retiring North Pacific
Kenneth Moore Retiring Central Pacific
Roger Parry Retiring South Atlantic
Gerald VanderYacht Retiring North Pacific
Robert Weiler Retiring East Gulf
Bob Golod Retiring East Gulf

Upcoming Educational Opportunities

May 2-3, 2017, Henderson, Nevada
Western States Regional Training Seminar
International Association of Marine Investigators
“Stolen boats & Security -Insurance Fraud Investigations”

For more information: Click Here

Lloyd’s Maritime Academy provides world leading academic and professional development courses that will give you the skills, knowledge and tools you need to assist your career progression and put you ahead of the competition. Cost-effective, efficient and flexible distance learning delivery means you can fit your studies around your work and home commitments. To browse the entire portfolio – including technical, legal, management, finance and logistics programmes – visit the website or download our prospectus

Contact Katrina Bowns, Education Consultant, Lloyd’s Maritime Academy


These marine insurance “introductory” classes, instructed by respected industry leaders are offered once each year. These courses are the first step toward earning the new AIMU “Certificate in Marine Insurance” (COMI). To read more and register for upcoming courses, please visit: AIMU Education 2017. Please take advantage of the AIMU on-demand webinars as well.


A new online course, Marine Insurance Fundamentals, has been launched by The Institutes. According to Arthur Flitner, senior director of Knowledge Resources at The Institutes, “The course was developed to fill a crucial training need as new employees are hired to replace retiring marine insurance professionals. Instead of trying to teach beginners the nuances of the United States marine market – such as COGSA or the American Institute Hull Clauses – the course focuses on the global principles of marine insurance. “After completing this foundational course, new marine insurance professionals will be in a good place to learn market-specific laws and policy forms as they progress in their careers.”

This approach to training new marine employees was validated by a panel of AIMU committee members who thoroughly reviewed the course. The main topics covered in the course include cargo, hull, P&I, recreational watercraft, marine underwriting and marine claims. The online instructional content is supplemented with an online quiz for each of the six assignments and an online final exam. Most students can complete the course in 8 to 14 hours. “I see this course becoming a key orientation piece for new marine employees,” Flitner added. “For more information about Marine Insurance Fundamentals, please visit our website.” Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.


IUMI has just released its quarterly “IUMI Eye” newsletter in digital format. It can be accessed via the IUMI website at: IUMI. The newsletter contains a wealth of news and articles of interest to the marine insurance community. IUMI hopes that the new look is appealing and easier to read.

Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

NAMSWorthy Articles Of Interest

The Inland Rules of the Road Rule 9
Narrow Channels Rule as It Applies to
Recreational Vessels: What is a Narrow Channel?

Co-Chair, NAMS Fishing Vessel Technical Committee
Southwest Passage Marine Surveys, LLC

Rule 9 in the Inland Rules of the Road (NAVRULES) is the Narrow Channels Rule which states:
“A vessel proceeding along the course of a narrow channel or fairway shall keep as near to the outer limit of the channel or fairway which lies on her starboard side as is safe and practicable.” (§ 83.09 (a) (i).)

The words “narrow channel” is mentioned six times in Inland Rule 9. The most significant instance is in (§ 83.09 (a) (i)(ii): “a power-driven vessel operating in narrow channels or fairways on the Great Lakes, Western Rivers, or waters specified by the Secretary, and proceeding downbound with a following current shall have the right-of-way over an upbound vessel, shall propose the manner and place of passage, and shall initiate the maneuvering signals prescribed by Rule 34(a)(i) (§ 83.34(a)(i)), as appropriate. The vessel proceeding upbound against the current shall hold as necessary to permit safe passing.” This is the only place in the NAVRULES, other than Rule 14 (d) Head on Situation, that the term “right of way” indicating the legal right vessel of a vessel to proceed with precedence over vessels in a particular situation or place. This differs significantly from the normal “give-way” and “stand-on” requirements in the NAVRULES (Rules 16 and 17).
In sub-paragraphs (b) – (e) and (g) of Rule 9 “narrow channel” is used four times basically stating that vessels “shall not impede the passage of any other vessel navigating within a narrow channel or fairway.” Lastly it is used is in sub-paragraph (f) which states “A vessel nearing a bend or an area of a narrow channel or fairway where other vessels may be obscured by an intervening obstruction shall navigate with particular alertness and caution and shall sound the appropriate signal prescribed in Rule 34(e) (§ 83.34(e)).”

“Narrow channel” is next mentioned in Rule 30 Lights and Shapes, § 83.30 (e) Vessels anchored, aground and moored barges, which states: “A vessel of less than 7 meters in length, when at anchor, not in or near a narrow channel, fairway, anchorage, or where other vessels normally navigate, shall not be required to exhibit the lights or shape prescribed in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this Rule.” (The lights and shapes referred to are the anchor light and anchor ball.) Again the purpose here is that an anchored vessel must not impede navigation in a narrow channel.
What is missing in either Inland Rule 9 or Inland Rule 30 is a definition of “narrow channel.” Certainly, a narrow channel for two ocean-going vessels or two tugboats pushing barges would be different from a narrow channel for recreational vessels. Indeed, the definition for a narrow channel would appear to be different depending on the recreational vessels involved, i.e., two houseboats, two small boats, a small boat and a PWC, or two PWCs.

The authoritative Farwell’s Rules of the Nautical Road (7th ed., 2005) devotes Chapter 9 “Responsibilities in Narrow Channels and Fairways.” to Rule 9, covering both the International and Inland Rule 9. The discussions and the examples in this chapter are focused on commercial vessels and not on recreational vessels. However, Farwell’s does state: “Mariners must in the first instance determine whether a particular waterway is a narrow channel controlled by Rule 9, … while understanding that the operators on other vessels and, if the need arises, the courts might disagree.” This would obviously appear to apply to recreational as well as large commercial vessels.

With regards to narrow channels, in 1982 the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recommended that the US Coast Guard publish “a set of interpretive rulings on the subject.” To date no such document has been published, but the USCG does say this at: <>
Q. Who specifies whether a waterway is a Narrow Channel and therefore Rule 9 is applicable?

Ans. A waterway is deemed a narrow channel by the practical and traditional uses of that waterway (usually a court determination) or it can be specified by the Secretary in Title 33 CFR part 89.25.”

If the investigator thinks the narrow channel rule applies to a marine accident involving two recreational vessels and the channel has not previously been determined to be a narrow channel for recreational vessels, it is up to the investigator to prove that the area of the waterway in question is indeed a narrow channel for the recreational vessels involved.

To do this the following guidance should be used.

1. Channel Characteristics:

Width of the channel – at the location of the accident as well as approaching the area of accident.
Depth and of the channel – at the location of the accident as well as approaching the area of accident.

  • Bathymetry of the channel –winding, straight, islands, sandbanks, wrecks, deadheads, shoals.
  • Characteristics of t
  • Aids to navigation – buoys, day markers, waterway markers.
  • Aerial view of the waterway. This can be done using a drone. A chart or map (if available) is an important tool in this effort and should be used, but a drone will give more up to date information.

2. Characteristics of vessels using the channel:

  • Normal traffic and activity on the waterway
  • Length, breadth, and draft of vessels involved.
  • Maneuverability of vessels involved – speed, loading, sailboat under sail only?
  • Activity of vessels involved – upbound, downbound, pulling a water skier or wakeboarder, trolling?
  • Navigation equipment of vessels involved – paper charts, electronic charts, radar (in use?), fathometer, etc.
  • Lighting – if required at time of accident.

3. Site visit with two vessels similar to the two vessels involved as well as similar water conditions and depth of water.

4. Other factors:

  • Local custom.
  • Proximity of marinas, docks, piers, breakwaters or other waterfront facilities.
  • Construction.
  • Weather.
  • Sea state.

Utilizing the above factors, the investigator should be able to provide a report that will prove or disprove that the waterway in question is a narrow channel for the recreational vessels involved. It should be noted that when undertaking a site visit and attempting to recreate the circumstances of the accident it is important that the Scientific Method be used and that the circumstances be replicated as closely as possible. This includes type of vessels, loading, time of day, waterway conditions, etc.

Variations from this can be a reason for the other side to question the validity of the test and prohibit the results from being admitted in court.

Surveyor’s Introduction to Towing Vessel Inspection Bureau (TVIB)

Training for 46 CFR Subchapter M Surveys of INSPECTED Commercial Towing Vessels by Greg Weeter, NAMS-CMS, SAMS-AMS

As you may have heard, big changes are afoot regarding towing vessels in the U.S. Under 46 CFR Subchapter M, most towing vessels over 26 feet in length are required to be inspected. A Certificate of Inspection (COI) is required by a certain date, without which the vessel cannot legally operate. Sub M brings towing vessels on par with inspected passenger vessels, which only USCG marine inspectors can inspect. A provision in Sub M allows certain qualified marine surveyors operating under the auspices of a Third Party Organization (TPO) to carry out the inspections.

For years, I have waited to learn what 46 CFR Subchapter M inspected towing vessel surveys will encompass, and to see if the skills I’ve developed over 36 years in the surveying business will position me as a Sub M surveyor. I recently attended the first TVIB class to qualify surveyors to perform Sub M surveys. This new line of commercial survey work will be a paradigm shift for many surveyors who do not come from a USCG background, or who do not do general condition surveys with a view to loss control. Unlike an independent surveyor’s work product, the Sub M report must be reviewed and approved by the TPO before it is submitted to the Coast Guard for the Coast Guard to issue the COI.

For surveyors, Sub M requires the involvement of a Third Party Organization (TPO) an organization approved by the Coast Guard to conduct independent verification to assess whether towing vessels and their Towing Safety Management Systems (TSMS) comply with applicable requirements contained in Subchapter M.

TVIB was awarded TPO status in January 2017. TVIB is a not-for-profit professional association comprised of members who are auditors, surveyors and supporting organizations. Like NAMSGlobal, TVIB has screening, a code of ethics, a grievance procedure and educational opportunities. Continuing professional development is required to remain in good standing. TVIB has invited NAMSGlobal surveyors to participate and receive training. Classes for auditors and surveyors will be offered around the US in the coming years.

Those of us who regularly perform C & V surveys of commercial towing vessels are accustomed to observing, reporting, and in the case of safety or maintenance deficiencies, recommending correction of the deficiencies. These C & V surveys are performed principally for insurance or financial purposes, so an underwriter, lender or prospective buyer gets a sense of the vessel’s equipment, value and risk. Ordinarily, a surveyor observes a deficiency and makes a recommendation. Depending on the severity, the surveyor classifies its urgency. It’s up to the owner to decide whether or not to fix it. In the case of Sub M, compliance is a required by regulation.
The regulation employs new terminology: non-conformity, major non-conformity and deficiency.

A non-conformity is defined as a situation where “objective evidence indicates that a specific Safety Management System requirement is not fulfilled.”
A major non-conformity is defined in the regulation as a “non-conformity that poses a serious threat to personnel, vessel safety, or the environment, and requires immediate corrective action.” When a major non-conformity is encountered, the Sub M surveyor is required to notify the TPO, who, in turn, notifies the Coast Guard Officer in Charge of Marine Inspection (OCMI). The vessel owner/operator is also required to notify the OCMI.

Less severe than the two non-conformities above is a deficiency, defined as a “failure to meet the minimum requirements of the vessel inspection laws or regulations.” Deficiencies, non-conformities and major non-conformities are to be listed on the survey form, and compliance date(s) negotiated with the owner/operator.

In some regards, the Sub M survey will be in more detail than we may be used to during an insurance C & V as per § 137.215 “General conduct of survey”. “Beyond the minimum standards required, the thoroughness and stringency of the survey will depend upon the condition of the vessel and its equipment. If a surveyor finds a vessel to have multiple deficiencies indicative of systematic failures to maintain the installed equipment, he or she will conduct an expanded examination to ensure all deficiencies are identified and corrective action is promptly taken.”

Devices, systems, structures, procedures to be inspected include but are not limited to (paraphrased from 46 CFR):

  • Determining that the item or system functions as designed, is free of defects or modifications that reduce its effectiveness, is suitable for the service intended, and functions safely in a manner consistent for vessel type, service and route.
  • Review of certificates and documentation held on the vessel.
  • Visual examination and tests of the vessel and its equipment and systems in order to confirm that their condition is properly maintained and that proper quantities are onboard;
  • Visual examination of the systems used in support of drills or training to determine that the equipment utilized during a drill operates as intended; and
  • Visual examination to confirm that unapproved modifications were not made to the vessel or its equipment.

Examine the condition of, and where appropriate, witness the operation of the following:

  • Watertight bulkheads
  • Watertight closures
  • Through-hull fittings and sea valves.
  • Superstructure, masts, and similar arrangements constructed on the hull.
  • Railings and bulwarks and their attachments to the hull structure.
  • Appropriate guards or rails.
  • All accessible interior spaces to ensure that they are adequately ventilated and drained, and that means of escape are maintained and operate as intended.
  • Vessel markings (Machinery, fuel, and piping systems).
  • Engine control mechanisms, including primary and alternate means.
  • All fuel systems, including fuel tanks, tank vents, piping, and pipe fittings;
  • All overboard discharge and intake valves and watertight bulkhead pipe penetration valves;
  • Means provided for pumping bilges; and
  • Machinery shut-downs and alarms.
  • Steering systems. Examine the condition of, and where appropriate, witness the operation.
  • Alarms.
  • Pressure vessels and boilers.
  • Electrical.
  • Lifesaving.
  • Fire protection.
  • Towing gear.
  • Deck machinery including controls, guards, alarms and safety features.
  • Hawsers, wires, bridles, push gear, and related vessel fittings for damage or wear.
  • Navigation equipment, lights, navigation charts or maps appropriate to the area of operation and corrected up to date.
  • Sanitary examination. Examine the quarters, toilet and washing spaces, galleys, serving pantries, lockers, and similar spaces to ensure that they are clean and decently habitable.
  • Unsafe practices, fire hazards, and other hazardous situations, bilges and other spaces are free of excessive accumulation of oil, trash, debris, or other matter that might create a fire hazard, clog bilge pumping systems, or block emergency escapes.
  • Vessel personnel, manned in accordance with the vessel’s COI, crew is maintaining vessel logs and records, crew is complying with the crew safety and personnel health requirements, crew has received training required by parts 140, 141, and 142 of this subchapter.
  • Prevention of oil pollution.
  • Miscellaneous systems and equipment, such as ground tackle, markings, and placards

The Sub M surveyor must be aware of the overall fitness of the vessel and its equipment in order to attest on the survey/inspection form that the vessel is in compliance with applicable regulations and is fit for its route and service. Drydock and an internal structure exam is required at certain intervals, depending on salt water service. In the case of outstanding deficiencies, non-conformities and major non-conformities, a check box allows the surveyor to show there are outstanding items that require correction before the COI can be issued.

There is a statement on the survey form indicating that either the vessel is in compliance with applicable regulations and is fit for the intended route and service, or follow up is required due to non-conformities or deficiencies.

The class was attended by surveyors, ex-USCG marine inspectors, RCP/TSMS auditors and towing company compliance heads. There were lively discussions of actual survey experiences and looking forward to consider how to handle situations that may be encountered. There is much to be aware of in this complex new survey process. Doing Sub M surveys will be a fruitful new line of work for which careful preparation is required if you choose to pursue it. Teaming up with an RCP/TSMS auditor makes sense to familiarize yourself with TSMS.

USCG – towing vessel inspection

The US Coast Guard issued a policy letter identifying the circumstances in which an uninspected towing vessel (UTV) decal may be used to meet certain requirements regarding issuance of the initial Certificate of Inspection (COI) under Subchapter M. CG-CVC Policy Letter 17-01

Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog. [email protected]


Marking another milestone in its recovery, the U.S. recreational boat industry sold more than 250,000 boats in 2016 for the first time in eight years. With all 50 states reporting, Statistical Surveys said today that 258,879 boats were sold last year, an increase of 5.4 percent from 2015. The company said the last time industry sales topped a quarter million was in 2008, when 279,139 were sold as the Great Recession started. A preliminary report Statistical Surveys issued in January said 246,891 boats were sold in 2016 in 27 early-reporting states. The remaining states added about 12,000 to the final total. Statistical Surveys sales director Ryan Kloppe agreed that topping the 250,000 sales figure was a psychologically important accomplishment for the industry. He said his company predicted sales growth of 4 percent to 6 percent last year, “and it was right in that ballpark.” The 50-state figures included sales of 169,121 boats in the main powerboat segments, an increase of 5.7 percent from 2015. The main-segments sales were dominated by three categories that have been the group’s best sellers since the recession ended. Outboard fiberglass boats from 11 to 50 feet were the top-selling category in the main segments at 50,087, up 5.8 percent from 47,351 the previous year. Not far behind were aluminum pontoon boats at 48,564, up 9.4 percent from 44,406 in 2015. Sales of aluminum fishing boats totaled 47,461, 3.7 percent higher than the previous year, when 45,751 were sold. “That’s a lot of volume,” Kloppe said. “There were some segments that had really solid years.” Sales of ski and wake boats, a rising category, rose 11.7 percent to 8,787 from 7,868 the year before, achieving the highest percentage gain among the main segments. Kloppe expects that outboard fiberglass boats, aluminum pontoons and fishing boats, and ski and wake boats will continue to carry the industry this year. The Coast Guard was up to date in its reports on documented vessels, providing complete figures for the full year in the bigger-boat categories. Sales of 31- to 40-foot cruisers rose 5.6 percent to 1,504 from 1,424 the previous year. Sales of 41- to 65-foot yachts rose 3.4 percent to 1,035 from 1,001; and sales of 66-foot and larger semicustom and custom yachts fell 7.1 percent to 145 from 156. Sailboat sales rose 3.9 percent to 2,080 from 2,002. (Soundings Trade Only Today, 3/13/2017) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.


The National Transportation Safety Board issued a report Thursday identifying the risks associated with the shared use of America’s Marine Transportation System by recreational and commercial vessels. The growth of both commercial and recreational vessel traffic during the last several decades is a significant risk factor. The number of canoers, kayakers, and standup paddleboarders increased by nearly 22 percent between 2008 and 2014.

The diversity of waterway users and their differences in experience, navigational knowledge, and boat-handling skills exacerbate the safety risk. The NTSB concludes in its safety recommendation report “Shared Waterways: Safety of Recreational and Commercial Vessels in the Marine Transportation System” that all recreational vessel operators need to attain a minimum level of boating safety education to mitigate risk.

In addition, the NTSB believes the U.S. Coast Guard should require recreational boaters on US navigable waterways to demonstrate completion of an instructional course meeting the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators or equivalent standards. “Just as operators of motor vehicles upon our nation’s roadways are required to demonstrate a standard of understanding of the rules of the road in order to make roadways safer for all vehicles, large and small, so too must operators of recreational vessels understand and practice the rules of the road upon our nation’s maritime transportation system to make waterways safer for all vessels, larges and small,” said NTSB Chairman Christopher A. Hart.

The NTSB issued three safety recommendations to the US Coast Guard, one to the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators and one the National Water Safety Congress in the report. These recommendations address the need to identify and mitigate risks associated with shared waterways, and training and education for recreational vessel operators. To read or download “Shared Waterways: Safety of Recreational and Commercial Vessels in the Marine Transportation System” (NTSB Press Release, 2/9/2017) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Two new marine surveying books for your library ….

‘Marine Surveying and Consultancy – An Introduction’ by Mike Wall, published Jan 2017 by the author. Cost US$99 + P&P.
ISBN: 9-78-616-429-228-4.


Having been an independent marine surveyor and consultant for many years the book is based on the author’s experiences. It is primarily aimed at those wishing to become independent marine surveyors and consultants. It covers many aspects of their work with some covered in depth.

Marine surveys are of two types, proactive and reactive. In the former the surveyor inspects a vessel before a voyage or activity to ensure that it meets relevant requirements, standards and/or international conventions. A reactive survey is carried out after an event or incident. The former tend to be carried out by marine surveyors whilst the latter tend to involve an opinion from a marine consultant.

The book contributes to the debate on the differences between marine surveying and marine consultancy. It covers different types of marine survey and marine consultancy assignment including hull damage, explosions, fire, pollution, sinkings, salvage and bunker disputes. Collisions, cargo disputes, crew injury and machinery failure are also covered with several examples.

Many marine consultants also aspire to becoming marine accident investigators and expert witnesses. These two areas are covered in detail, dealing with lawyers, going into court, and working with other experts and subcontractors.

The lack of awareness of our industry also extends to that of the marine surveyor/consultant, often being mistaken for marine biologists. Consequently. it takes time to explain the roles to the layman. When it is explained the response is often “That must be a really interesting job.” Hopefully, you will agree after reading this book.

‘Marine Warranty Surveying – An Introduction’ by Mike Wall, published Jan 2017 by the author. Cost US$99 + P&P. ISBN: 978-616-429-215-4


The book is intended for those considering entering the marine warranty surveying discipline of marine surveying. It introduces prospective marine warranty surveyor (MWS) to the wide variety of work available.

Marine operations are still of higher risk to underwriters, who, not having this expertise, need appropriate technical support to assess the risks. This involves the services of an additional independent third party specialist. The MWS is the eyes and ears of the underwriter and claims adjuster. His role is to assess risk by reviewing the technical and operational aspects of a marine project on their behalf, the ultimate aim being the issue of a certificate of approval.

The book deals with the various types of warranty survey and the role of the MWS, including:

  • The various types of warranty and legal aspects.
  • The London market joint committees.
  • Codes of practice and Scope of Work.
  • Required outcomes.
  • Surveyors’ liability.
  • Port risk surveys.
  • Lay-up and reactivation surveys.
  • Tow approvals.
  • Stowage of deck and project cargoes.
  • Port and terminal surveys.
  • Shipyard risk assessments.
  • Warranties in the offshore sector including mooring, anchor spreads, rig lay-ups and wind farm operations.

It is hoped that the book will be a tool for training and a reference source for the new and experienced Marine Warranty Surveyor.

Foreword by Steve Weiss: “Mike’s book brings an understanding of the complexities and the variety of experience and training that an MWS must have to practice in the field. He combines the practical – recommended procedures, list of guidelines necessary to fully practice that are, I think, meant to complement a seaman’s skills.

Like his report writing book before, it is a practical guide that, while it can point you down the path, requires practical application in Marine Surveying to have its full effect. Marine Warranty Surveying especially takes experience, mentorship, and a good level head to be successful in the field. It also requires the ability to put that field experience on paper in a way that is understandable and easy to read. The combination of the right experience and the ability to write, make the two books of Mike’s useful tools.

Mike has done an exceptional job in putting words together to describe a complex subject. I look forward to the publishing of the book with its future use in the industry as a tool for training and a reference source for the new and experienced Marine Warranty Surveyor.”

Steven Weiss, CPCU, AMIM, NAMS-CMS
Senior Vice President – Marine
Aspen Insurance
Houston, Texas

Both books available from: [email protected]

To see other publications, go to:

SUB M – Policy Letter – Endorsement for Tankerman PIC Restricted to Fuel Transfers on Towing Vessels

March 14, 2017 by Tava Foret

One of the unintended consequences of Subchapter M is the triggering of 33 CFR 155.710(e)(1) which requires the PIC onboard an inspected vessel transferring fuel oil requiring a Declaration of Inspection (DOI) hold an MMC authorizing service as a master, mate, pilot, engineer, or operator as per 46 CFR Part 11 OR a valid MMC endorsed as Tankerman PIC as per 46 CFR Part 13. A towing vessel’s transition to inspected status triggers the above requirement.

On 03/10/2017 the Coast Guard issued a policy letter providing guidance for issuing Merchant Mariner Credential (MMC) endorsements of Tankerman Person In Charge (PIC) Restricted to Fuel Transfers on Towing Vessels.

Click here to download the policy letter. Courtesy TVIB


Marine underwriters have experienced that the frequency of fires in the car/ro-ro passenger vessel segment is increasing and is currently at a level twice the frequency of fires on most other vessel types. IUMI’s most recent position paper addresses the issue of fires on ro-ro passenger vehicle decks. This paper can be found at the following link on the IUMI website:

Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

TAPA (Transported Asset Protection Association) EMEA just released their 2016 Annual Report.

Some of the key statistics are as follows;

  • 2,611 cargo crimes reported
  • Only 87 involved violence or threat thereof with most theft from unsecured parking facilities
  • 1,188 incidents in the UK alone
  • Four (4) countries- UK, Netherlands, Germany & Sweden represent over 86% of the total
  • 34 countries in total reported a cargo theft
  • Most active months were February, March, April, October and November
  • Total value of stolen goods is in excess of €77 million but less than half the incidents provided a monetary value
  • Average value of goods taken was about €30,000
  • Most frequently targeted cargo was food & beverages (10.6%) followed by apparel (clothing and footwear), furniture & appliances, cosmetics and computers.

The number of incidents increased 72 percent over 2015 levels. TAPA EMEA launched a campaign to improve cargo crime reporting and it seems to have been successful. The true extent of the problem is yet to be determined. Some have questioned whether the number of thefts has risen or do the new data just reflect the fuller reporting.

Regardless, there is work to be done by all stakeholders. Here are a few suggested steps:

  • Insurers- we need to work with our assureds (shippers and transportation providers) to develop viable prevention strategies and share best practices with them.
  • Shippers- they need to factor in security when making logistics decisions most notably in selecting transportation partners.
  • Transportation carriers and intermediaries- work on driver selection and security awareness training efforts and improve facility security.
  • Law Enforcement- get more support for special taskforces on the local, regional and national levels. Cooperate with private supply chain entities.

In the United States, cargo theft shares a lot of similarities with what is taking place in Europe. Food and non-alcoholic beverages are the most stolen category of goods; incidents are highly localized in just a few states (California, Texas, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey and Georgia) and violence is involved in even a smaller number of cases with unsecured locations being the venue of choice.

At a recent meeting of the Eastern Region Transportation Security Council, one of the member companies stated that over 40 thefts have taken place at two truck stops in Dallas, Texas: a Flying J facility at 7425 Bonnie View Road and a Pilot Travel Plaza at 8787 S. Lancaster Road in Dallas. While we cannot validate this assertion; we do know that cargo criminals are active in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area and cargo at rest there is cargo at extreme risk. Courtesy Chubb Marine Underwriters’ Loss Control NewsBlog
Stacks of sky-blue shipping containers, one of the last assets of bankrupt Hanjin Shipping Co., litter ports on both coasts. Now a fight is brewing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court over who can sell them.

Earlier this month, a Seoul court declared Hanjin bankrupt and ordered the firm’s liquidation, bringing about the final chapter of the ocean-shipping industry’s largest-ever collapse. All that remains of Hanjin will be liquidated, including ships, stakes in seaport terminals and other assets such as its containers. In a court filing this week in New Jersey bankruptcy court, attorneys for a handful of Hanjin’s creditors asked for permission to foreclose on the container assets and sell them. The request came days after Maher Terminals LLC, which runs one of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey’s marine terminals, said in a court filing that Hanjin owes more than $3 million in penalties and storage fees on 256 containers clogging up the terminal’s docks.

The presence of those containers “causes a severe backlog and limits the space available within the Maher Facility (which space is extremely valuable) to offload containers from ships arriving into the port.” Maher Senior Manager Bradley Sherwin wrote in the court filing. Mr. Sherwin and attorneys for Maher asked for permission to sell the containers, estimating each one would yield at most $1,000 if sold in bulk – “significantly less than the total Storage Charges owed by Hanjin to Maher.”

That seemed to have gotten the attention of Hanjin’s creditors. “Every day that the Banks are delayed from selling the Containers significant storage charges are incurred and the risk that the Containers are sold by the terminals or depots where they are stranded is heightened,” they wrote in this week’s filing.

Maher’s New Jersey facility isn’t the only place where Hanjin’s empty containers – with the company’s logo and white capital letters spelling its name – are getting in the way. Freight and logistics firms in Southern California have been working since last fall to remove thousands of Hanjin containers from the wheeled trailers, known as chassis, used to haul them off the docks. There are now only about 500 Hanjin boxes still stuck on chassis in the region. But terminal managers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, Calif. say hundreds more remain at the docks, getting in the way of everyday operations. (The Wall Street Journal, 2/23/2017) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Officer died after falling off cargo

The UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency is set to amend the Code of Safe Working Practices for merchant seafarers (COSWP) following the death of a chief officer in a fall on-board a UK-flagged general cargo ship. Laur Marin, a Romanian national, who was also the ship’s safety officer, died in May last year when he fell from a heavy steel crankshaft web which was being repositioned in the cargo hold of the 9,530gt Carisbrooke vessel Johanna C in the port of Songkhla, Thailand.

The 400 tonnes of crankshaft webs, which each weighed between 37 and 46 tonnes, and 506 tonnes of steel pipes had to be transferred to put the ship on an even keel draft before it sailed for the port of Xinhui, in China.

A UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) report said the officer had lost his balance and fallen 1.35m to the deck following the sudden and unexpected movement of the crankshaft web as it was lifted by crane.

Mr. Marin had climbed onto the cargo and was holding one of the slackened slings with his right hand while directing the crane driver by radio and hand signals to heave up slowly.

Investigators said the lifting slings may have slipped from their intended positions as they tensioned, but the report also notes that it was inherently unsafe and unnecessary for the chief officer to stand on top of the cargo while it was being lifted.

The report says the master and chief officer had reportedly conducted a risk assessment for the cargo shift, but they had not recorded it. The risks of standing on a load under tension had either been not recognised or ignored.
The MAIB said Carisbrooke crews regularly conduct cargo shifting operations, with provisions in the charter party enabling them to undertake additional work at supplementary pay rates, unless prohibited by local labour laws.

Working on top of the cargo was seen as routine practice on board Johanna C, the report points out, and it adds that the general lack of adherence to cargo procedures, which was probably influenced by a “can-do” attitude and the attraction of financial reward, is of concern.
The current COSWP does not specifically warn against standing on top of a load being lifted, and the MCA has drafted proposed amendments for the next review of the Code, early this year.

The MAIB said that in view of these proposals, and because of post-accident action by Carisbrooke Shipping, it had decided not to make any recommendations as a result of the investigation.

The report said the crew had responded promptly and positively after the accident, but despite their efforts Mr. Marin died in hospital shore as a result of bleeding and chest injuries.

Courtesy FLASHLIGHT, E-newsletter circulated to more than 5,000 people involved in marine surveying around the world. It is a collation of articles relevant to our profession from various publications and contributions from readers. Letters, opinions and articles are welcomed. Contact [email protected]

NTSB – sinking of fishing vessel

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued the report of its investigation of the sinking, with loss of life, of the commercial fishing vessel Orin C off Cape Ann, Massachusetts on 3 December 2015. The three crew members abandoned the vessel just prior to its sinking. One crew member, though, lost consciousness before being pulled into a USCG motor lifeboat. Despite over an hour of CPR, the crew member died.

The probable cause of the sinking was the structural failure of the vessel’s wooden hull and subsequent flooding. While probably not a factor in the fisherman’s death, the NTSB noted that the USCG motor lifeboat carried advanced first-aid equipment that the crew members knew how to operate. It recommended that at least one USCG crew member on each rescue vessel be trained in use of the first-aid and trauma equipment on board. Marine Accident Brief  17-05 (2/28/17) Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog.

State court – punitive damages for unseaworthiness

In an en banc decision, the Supreme Court of the State of Washington ruled that seamen are entitled to seek punitive damages when their alleged injuries are due in part to an unseaworthy condition on their vessel in circumstances indicating at least recklessness on the part of the vessel owner. The court noted that unseaworthiness actions arise in common law and that punitive damages are available in common law. There is no US Supreme Court decision on point and the court declined to follow federal appellate decisions to the contrary. Tabingo v. American Triumph LLC, No. 92913-1 (Wash., March 9, 2017). Note: This decision was brought to my attention by my friend Rivers Black of Nicoll Black & Feig . Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog. [email protected]


On the subject of paper and proper handling of rolls (and for that matter unusually shaped cargo even computer equipment in upright racks and certain appliances), forklifts are not created equally. There are purpose-built lift attachments for certain types of cargo and using them lead to better outcomes in the form of less damage. Image the difference in lifting and moving large, heavy rolls of high value, and prone to cuts and tears, paper stock using a conventional forklift with its tines as opposed to utilizing one with clamp arms specifically designed for that purpose.

In an ideal world there is close collaboration among the lift truck and attachment manufacturers as well as the product packaging engineers. Unfortunately, in some cases the truck and attachment designs are done independently resulting in mismatched installation and restricted view/vision for the operator. Courtesy Chubb Marine Underwriters’ Loss Control NewsBlog.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s food safety rule.

“Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food” published this time last year will go into effect on June 1st for large businesses and the following June for small businesses. It is designed to protect food by keeping it safe form contamination during transportation as well as preventing practices that would create food safety risks such as failure to properly refrigerate food and inadequate cleaning of vehicles between shipments. There are a number of requirements for shippers, consignees, cargo handlers and transport companies. Three of the more important are:

  • Transportation vehicles must be suitable and adequately clean for their intended use and capable of maintaining necessary temperatures for safe carriage of food.
  • Measures must be taken to ensure food safety by preventing contamination or cross contact with previous cargo.
  • Training of handling and transport personnel in sanitary practices and maintaining documentation to this effect.

Shortly after the rule was released, we submitted a number of clarifying comments/questions to the FDA that were incorporated into a letter from the Inland Marine Underwriters Association sent to the agency. The IMUA received a response, albeit nearly 7 months later. Anyone interested in obtaining a copy of the original questions and the replies from the government, contact the undersigned. Courtesy Chubb Marine Underwriters’ Loss Control NewsBlog.

Poem of the month

Courtesy Ted Crosby, NAMS-CMS

He paced the good Narenta’s bridge, a sea-dog through and through

The master of as fine a ship as ever rode the blue-

He told me this himself, and so of course it must be true.

I liked his weatherbeaten cheek, the twinkle of his eye.

He was a bluff-bowed human craft, a sailin’ full and bye-

A stern and hardy man withal, at one with sea and sky.

But in the master’s cabin was naught of wind or sea,

Nor boarding pikes nor cutlasses to quell a mutiny-

But earthen pot and window box bore flowers fair to see.

It pleases me to think of him as last I saw him-so-

A doughty figure on his bridge-yet shipmate, down below-

With hyacinth and daffodil and freesias in a row.

And thus, amid storm-ridden years,

I pray, dear God, to find

A bit of scented color

In the cabin of my mind.

By James A. Quinby

The Street And The Sea

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