President’s Corner

First of all I want to send my thoughts and prayers to any of you affected by Super Storm Sandy. Having been without electricity for 15 days after Hurricane IKE in 2008, I have a great appreciation for your plight. On a positive note, several of our surveyors have been beneficiaries of increased work due to the storm. I would like to hear any stories out there, especially of the enduring spirit of the American soul.

It continues to be very busy in Houston not only from my day job but also NAMSGlobal. As you all know, we had a very positive Board meeting on the Marine Warranty Surveyor initiative and should be bringing in the first new members in the near future. We have incorporated the group as a NAMSGlobal subsidiary and the test is in development. I will keep you all abreast of the developments.

San Diego and the NAMSGlobal conference are right around the corner. It starts on March 3 with the Board meeting and completes on March 5. Please keep your eyes open for news and the schedule. Anyone with a good speaker please let Reggie or Greg Gant know.

The Fishing vessel avenue to CMS is now fully in place. The exam is also ready to be taken. Please contact the NAMS office; or your local RVP, Dick Frenzel or Joe Derie if you are looking to take the exam.

We all learn in different ways and have different needs for training, but it is critically important that we all do our Continuing Education on time and if it is out of the ordinary, preapproved. There are multitude and myriad ways to get credits and improve your knowledge and capabilities. This is an incredibly important pillar that supports the image of NAMSGlobal. Please take the time and make the effort to keep this up to date. It makes Evie’s and the Qualifications Committee job much easier.

I am not sure how many are aware of the NAMSGlobal speaker’s bureau. Greg Weeter has a list of NAMSGlobal members willing to speak on various topics. On the subject of speakers, we are looking for Cargo (especially) speakers for San Diego.

We are looking into making all of the NAMSGlobal exams multiple choice and or short answer and automating the system. This has been a long term goal of the Association and with the MWS certification; we will need to test in multiple global locations. We will keep you all in the loop on this.

Also, my best wishes to you and yours as the holidays approach. Please be safe and we will see you all in March 2013 in San Diego.

As always, we are looking for input from the members on how we can make the organization better and run more efficiently. Please let your BOD know if you have any comments.

As always, I remain,

Steven P. Weiss, NAMS-CMS

Editor’s Message

The news articles and current events you send in make the NAMSGlobal E-News interesting to readers in all disciplines of marine survey: send new material to [email protected].

Thanks, and best regards to all.

Greg Weeter, Editor

NAMS Applicants, New Members, Changes in Status, and Committee Assignments

New Applicants
Name Status & Discipline Applying For Region Sponsor(s)
James J. Bailey NAMS-CMSH&M & Cargo E Gulf Norman Dufour
Ave Boudreaux, NAMS Apprentice NAMS-CMSH&M E Gulf Norman Dufour
Richard A. Chase NAMS-CMSH&M E Gulf David J. Knowles

Crossed The Bar

Sunset and evening star, And one clear call for me!

And may there be no moaning of the bar, When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep, Too full for sound and foam,

When that which drew from out the boundless deep Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell, And after that the dark!

And may there be no sadness of farewell, When I embark;

For though from out our bourne of Time and Place The flood may bear me far,

I hope to see my Pilot face to face When I have crossed the bar.


Vincent Bamford, CM & Retired Life Member, 1918 – 2012 Vincent Bamford, 93, of Honey Pot Rd. Southwick passed away at home Sunday June 3, 2012. He was born in Philadelphia, PA, Oct. 15, 1918, the son of the late Frank and Anne (Worthington) Bamford. He moved to Atlantic City, New Jersey as a child where he graduated from Atlantic City High School. He was a proud graduate of the United States Merchant Marine Academy and an officer in the Merchant Marine. He served in the Navy during WWII, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Commander while serving in the Pacific. Vincent was employed by Liberty Mutual for 37 Years as an engineer, where he was instrumental in the development of life saving devices and fire suppression equipment. Vincent was a Registered Professional Engineer, Certified Marine Surveyor, Fire Protection Engineer and served on the Board of Directors for the American Boat and Yacht Counsel, Underwriters Laborites and the National Association of Marine Surveyors. Vincent’s beloved wife Katherine R. (Schmidt) Bamford passed away in September, 2000. He leaves his loving sons Best Selling Author James Bamford and his wife Maryanne of Washington DC, Tom Bamford and his wife Paula, his cherished granddaughter Christina C. Bamford. Funeral services and burial will be private, there will be no calling hours. The Cusack Funeral Home 94 Main St. Westfield has been entrusted with the arrangements. Memorial gifts can be made to the American Cancer Society 1 Speen St. Framingham, MA.

Upcoming Educational Events

AIMU Online Education

There are new additions to AIMU’s online Web Lecture Center, which now offers fourteen webinars. The online Web Lecture Center can be accessed through the AIMU website under the ‘Education’ tab or directly at Additional recordings will be added continually and will particularly benefit those who prefer viewing the lectures at their convenience. The fee for each webinar is $50 (members) and $75 (non-members).

SUNY Maritime College is offering the online courses listed below. All four courses are offered entirely online. Classes: Typical costs for online classes are $800.00 plus class book. Saving travel, lodging, meals and time away from your business practice. The typical 6-week course earns 18 credit hours for continuing education credits.

Class schedule for 2012
Cargo: 11/01/12 to 12/12/12
Yacht: 1/18/13 to 02/28/13
Cargo: 03/01/13 to 04/11/13 HULL: 04/12/13 to 05/23/13

To obtain syllabus of the classes contact: Janet Peck [email protected] To enroll in any of these classes you should contact: Margaret Poppiti Administrative Assistant Department of Professional Education & Training SUNY Maritime College 6 Pennyfield Avenue Throggs Neck, NY 10465 (718) 409-7341 [email protected]

MPI Online Education

On-Line modular Marine Incident Investigation course, specifically designed for people who are: personnel responsible for accident prevention such as ship safety officers, company safety officers, designated persons ashore (DPA), Captains and senior ship officers, operational ship managers, engineering and/or marine superintendents. It also applies to safety professionals, incident investigators, marine surveyors, loss prevention managers, risk managers, P&I underwriters and claims managers, solicitors, accountants, flag and port state control inspectors and classification society surveyors. Contact Lou Blackaby at [email protected] or telephone +44 (0) 1252 732220

4 – 5 December 2012, New Orleans, LA

SAMS is holding a regional meeting in New Orleans in conjunction with the International Workboat Show (see next below). For more information, visit the SAMS Website Events Page and look for the Gulf Regional Meeting.

5 – 7 December 2012, New Orleans, Louisiana

The International WorkBoat Show. For details, go to the International Workboat Show.

30 January – 1 February 2013, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida

International Marina & Boatyard Conference and Guided Tour of three marinas in the Ft. Lauderdale area.

IMBC is the only conference specifically geared toward marina and boatyard owners, operators, and managers as well as dock masters, harbormasters, boat builders and repairers, and industry consultants. It is where dedicated marine professionals gather to exchange information, talk about the future of the industry, explore new methods and techniques, receive updates on revised standards and established rules, and discover new products. The conference is produced by the Association of Marina Industries (AMI). For details phone (401) 682-7334. [email protected]

14 & 15 February 2013, Ft Lauderdale, FL

Knox Marine’s Annual Claims Conference

Knox Marine Consultants is proud to announce that their 20th Annual Yacht Claims Conference will be held at Roscioli Yachting Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Cost is $490 for the two-day event. Discounts are available for groups of four or more. On line registration is now available at

According to Steve Knox, President of Knox Marine Consultants, this annual program was developed for marine surveyors, insurance adjusters, claims handlers and underwriters, attorneys, repairers, and others who deal in the investigation and adjustment of pleasure boat losses. This is the only national conference devoted exclusively to yacht claims, and is a long established networking event for marine surveyors and insurance professionals.

Visit Knox Marine’s web site for the latest in conference news – The session topics change each year. You may register at the web site. For more information, contact Steve Knox at 804.222.5627 or [email protected]. The Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors (SAMS) and the National Association of Marine Surveyors (NAMS) have traditionally awarded 12 CEU’s for the conference.

22 – 24 February 2013, Morehead City, North Carolina

Marine Cargo Consultants, Inc. will be presenting a draft survey course. Limited to 10 students, the thee-day school of instruction will take the mystery out of the science of accurately determining a vessel’s weight by water displacement. Designed for those who have little or no previous experience performing surveys of this type, the program will be presented by an instructor who is an extremely experienced and practicing draft surveyor in a fun, relaxed and easy to understand format. Adhering to standards established by the United Nations and the Economic Commission for Europe (ECE) and using surveys and publications collected from actual vessels attended by the instructor, attention will be directed toward practical application rather than textbook theory. Throughout the entire course, the student can expect to be challenged with real-life scenarios while acquiring the fundamental skills necessary to properly perform a draft survey. NAMS & SAMS members will be awarded 18 CE credits for successful course completion. For more information, email [email protected] or call 1-800-567-6294 or + 1 202-239-2729 (Outside USA).

3 – 5 March 2013, San Diego, California

NAMSGlobal 51st National Marine Conference

Catamaran Resort Hotel & Spa, 3999 Mission Blvd., San Diego, CA. 92109. For details go to click on the Events tab.

12-13 March 2013 Montreal, Canada

ACI announces 4th Annual Polar Shipping Summit, Examining Current and Future Needs of Effective Polar Operations. For futher information or to register online, click here; or contact, Mohammad Ahsan at [email protected] or telephone at +44 (0) 207 981 2503


NAMS Member Honored

As reported in the Waterways Journal, Childs E. Dunbar, Jr. NAMS-CMS, was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Propeller Club of the United States at their International Convention in October, 2012. Mr. Dunbar, a NAMS-CMS since 2002, has been a member of the Propeller Club of the United States since his university days and has served for the last several years as the president of the New Orleans chapter.

Left to right in photograph – Andrew Riester, Wade Wetherington, Childs Dunbar, Brett Mason & Pat Patrick.

Sandy Losses

Superstorm Sandy, which slammed the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic last week, is likely to firm property/casualty insurance rates and lead to tighter terms and conditions experts say. While analysts said storm-related losses were within insurers’ financial ability to absorb them, certain insurers could be hit harder. Insure losses were estimated at $10 billion to $20 billion to $50 billion by Oakland, California-based catastrophe modeling firm Eqecat Inc. Boston-based AIR Worldwide Corp. put its insured loss estimate at $7 billion to $15 billion. Both excluded losses borne by the National Flood Insurance Program. Business interruption claims look to be a significant portion of insured losses that Superstorm Sandy inflicted on the East Coast last week and may lead to numerous coverage disputes. (Business Insurance, 11/05/12) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Largest Boating Insurance Loss In U.S. History

The Coast Guard, industry organizations and insurers are all still trying to get a handle on the extent of Sandy’s damage. But some in the recreation boating industry say boat destruction will be among the worst caused by a storm hitting the United States. BoatUS, which also provides boat insurance, has had Sandy-related damage claims spanning from Maryland to Maine and as far west as Cleveland. But quantifying the damage is difficult in part because there are still areas impacted by Sandy that aren’t accessible to insurers. The potential for boating damage was huge. New Jersey had more than 163,000 registered vessels as of the second quarter of this year, according to the Marine Trade Association of New Jersey, a nonprofit trade organization promoting the recreational marine industry. A 2008 economic study from the trade association estimated about 25 percent of the state’s registered boaters are in Ocean and Monmouth countries. (Asbury Park Press, 11/12/12) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Annals of Fortuity

The following breaking news appeared in a recent edition of the Isle of Wight County Press Rocket could have been fatal.

A Flyaway metal rocket launched in a lifeboat rescue mission embedded itself in the side of a car.

The RNLI this week apologised to the elderly owners of the car, promised its insurer would pay for the damage and said it would establish exactly what went wrong on Sunday afternoon.

It said it was confident all correct procedures were followed by the crew when the rocket was launched to carry a towline to a stricken catamaran at St Helens Duver. A second rocket was launched successfully.

Members of the public, who saw the first rocket disappear overhead, were aware it did not have a line attached, which would have held it back. Instead, it flew several hundred yards and crashed into a car at the Old Mill Caravan Park.

Park owner Rory Stephens said: “The extent of the damage led us at first to believe someone had tried to smash their way into the car. but then, we found the metal rocket, which weighs over 1 lb, embedded between the door and window glass. It was fortunate it did not hit someone because it would have killed them.”

Holidaymaker Ronald Bowles, 86, and his wife, Barbara, from Plymouth, were forced to cut short their holiday by two days to organise repair of their Honda.

“We are both RNLI supporters and were intrigued by the rescue going on. We never realised we would be part of it,” said Mr. Bowles.

RNLI divisional inspector Andrew Ashton said: “The cable is fire-proofed where it attaches to the rocket but we suspect a technical fault resulted in the line being burnt. The couple visited the lifeboat station on Tuesday to meet the crew and tour the station.

“We don’t yet know exactly what went wrong but the RNLI is investigating to identify the cause. In the meantime we are very grateful to the car’s owners for their patience and understanding.”

[Isle of Wight County Press–28Sep12] Courtesy Bow Wave–the marine and transport e-zine. BOW WAVE is published each week to over 15 000 Readers in the transport, insurance, shipping and finance industries. To subscribe contact Sam Ignarski [email protected].

Container Trade To Outpace Port Expansion

The global container trade will increase about 6 percent a year over the next five years, but marine terminal capacity is scheduled to increase only 3.3 percent annually, according to an industry analyst at Drewry Shipping Consultants. The global container trade will total about 600 million TEUs this year, up about 6 percent year-over-year, said Neil Davidson, Drewry’s senior adviser for ports. While not spectacular, that growth rate will result in a significant increase in volume given the large base. Speaking at the Navis World 2012 Conference in San Francisco, Davidson said the relentless growth in vessel size would strain the capacity of many ports that have inadequate harbor depths and container terminals that are too small to handle vessels with capacities ranging from 13,000 to 18,000 20-foot containers. A number of large load-center ports in Europe, Northeast Asia and the West Coast of North America have drafts of 50 feet and terminals with the capacity to handle 1 million TEUs or more per year, which is quickly becoming the standard for working new-generation container ships. (Journal of Commerce, 10/9/12) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

IUMI 2012 Presentations Available on

Facts and Figures:

Chairman’s Report & Report on World Merchant Fleet and World Trade, Cargo Index.

Global Marine Insurance Report

Ocean Hull:

Exposure Development – The Recent Changes in Risk Profiles
Salvage Issues – Technical and Operational Issues
Exposure Rating in Ocean Hull


The Future of Green Energy and its Transportation Challenges
York Antwerp Rules and Salvage Issues
The Carriage by Sea of Vegetable Oil
Non-Standard Cargo Wordings – The Devil in the Detail

Offshore and Energy:

Post Loss Presentation and Analysis
Financial Market’s Impact on our Marine Industry
Is Marine affected differently by the ongoing turmoil?
Financial Market’s Impact on our Marine Industry

Legal and Liability:

Sanctions Update
OFAC – Interpretation and Application of Sanctions to Insurance
Costa Concordia – Passenger Liability

Inland Hull, Fishing Vessels and Yachts:

US Legislation Affecting Foreign & US Vessels

Loss Prevention:

Ships’ Vulnerabilities and Questions Surveyors Wish Underwriters Would Ask
IUMI’s Work at IMO
Cargo Theft and Robbery in Latin America

The President’s Workshop

The Outlook for the US and Global Economies Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.
Waterways Journal to Put Inland River Record On-Line, by Subscription
Data from The Inland River Record is now a searchable online database of towing vessels. Subscribers will be able to search any combination of the following: name, length, width, owner, builder, year built, official number, engines, horsepower, etc. For more information, go to

Floating An Idea For Ports

Ports everywhere are trying to squeeze more productivity from container terminals. Ships are getting bigger; waterfront land is scarce and expensive. Asaf Ashar says it points to a new phase in the industry’s development. Ashar, research professor at the National Ports & Waterways Initiative, suggests attacking the problem with a network of pure transshipment ports served by nonstop shuttles using big ships that would connect with feeder services. In the recent paper and a subsequent interview, he floated the prospect of developing transshipment-only ports that would use barges to transfer blocks of containers between line haul and feeder ships, without the boxes ever touching land. Dockside gantry cranes would lift containers from ship to barges. Each barge would hold scores of containers that would be transferred to a single feeder port. “The whole idea is that instead of having a regular container yard, you have a floating yard,” he said. (Journal on Commerce, 11/5/12) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Waiting For The Mother Lode

With the Panama Canal expansion now set for completion in the first half of 2015, U.S. ports are scrambling to be port-Panamax ready. These New Panamax Size ships are as long as four football fields in length carrying upwards of 12,500 TEU containers stacked 22 rows across. In the fierce competition to accommodate these gargantuan containerships and larger ships in general, ports are adding Super post-Panamax cranes and dredging their channels depths of 50 feet. By 2030, post-Panamax size ships are expected to make up one-third of the world containership fleet and represent 62% of its capacity, according to “U.S. Port and Inland Waterways Modernization: Preparing for Post-Panamax Vessels,” a report submitted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Institute for Water Resources to Congress this past June. Congress is expected to use the report to make key decisions on how to support port and inland waterways modernization in order to accommodate post-Panamax vessels. The report says that the availability of larger, more efficient ships passing through the canal could potentially have at least three major market effects: (1) Freight that is currently shipped to the eastern half of the U.S. via rail connections from West Coast ports could potentially move directly via a waterborne route to East Coast ports; (2) To take full advantage of the very largest vessels that will be able to fit through the expanded canal but may be too large to call at most U.S. ports, a transshipment service in the Caribbean or a large U.S. port may develop. The largest vessels would unload containers at the transshipment hub for reloading on smaller feeder vessels for delivery to ports with less channel capacity; and (3) On the export side the ability to employ large bulk vessels is expected to significantly lower the delivery cost of U.S. agricultural exports to Asia and other foreign markets. This could have a significant impact on both the total quantity if U.S. agricultural exports and commodities moving down the Mississippi River for export at New Orleans. (Marine Log, September 2012) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

NFPA 301 – Code for Safety to Life From Fire on Merchant Vessels

The 2013 edition is now available from NFPA. NFPA 301 is concerned with merchant vessels not covered by NFPA 302, that is, those that are 300 GT or over.

ABS cleared of liability for Prestige tanker disaster

In an important case testing the extent of classification society responsibilities, a US court has ruled that Spain cannot hold the American Bureau of Shipping liable for the 2002 Prestige tanker disaster.

In a judgment that is expected to end almost a decade of legal wrangling, the New York appeals court found that Spain had not provided sufficient evidence to bring the case back to trial and it cleared ABS of reckless behaviour in its certification of the tanker as seaworthy.

Spain had lodged a series of civil suits against ABS claiming damages after 77,000 tonnes of oil was spilled when the 26-year-old single-hull tanker broke apart off Galicia. Courtesy FLASHLIGHT, a free monthly e-newsletter circulated to more than 5,000 people involved in marine surveying around the world. It is circulated to anybody who wishes to receive a copy. It is a collation of articles relevant to our profession taken from various publications together with contributions from readers. Letters, opinions and articles relating to our profession are welcomed for the newsletter. [email protected]

Is Piracy an Off-Hire Event?

Dolly Brown of Clyde & Co, writing in the firm’s Shipping Newsletter notes that the Commercial Court has considered once again the wording of an additional clause on an amended form NYPE46 charter party, in the context of a seizure by pirates, in order to determine whether a vessel was on or off-hire during a period of detention by pirates.

In Osmium Shipping Corporation v Cargill International SA (The “CAPTAIN STEFANOS”) [2012] the charter party contained the following clause:-

Clause 56
Should the vessel put back whilst on voyage by reason of any accident or breakdown, or in the event of loss of time either in port or at sea or deviation upon the course of the voyage caused by sickness of or accident to the crew or any person onboard the vessel (other than supercargo travelling by request of the Charterers) or by reason of the refusal of the Master or crew to perform their duties, or oil pollution even if alleged, or capture/seizure, or detention or threatened detention by any authority including arrest, the hire shall be suspended from the time of the inefficiency until the vessel is again efficient in the same or equidistant position in Charterers’ option, and voyage resumed therefrom. All extra directly related expenses incurred including bunkers consumed during period of suspended hire shall be for Owners’ account.

Owners said that any “capture/seizure” had to be by an authority, whereas Charterers argued that capture/seizure was an off-hire event distinct from “detention or threatened detention by any authority”, and that acts of piracy clearly fell within the meaning of “capture/seizure”. Owners also argued that a proper reading of clause 56, alongside the rest of the clauses in the charter party, including CONWARTIME 2004 (which was incorporated), had the effect of allocating the risk of piracy to Charterers. Charterers submitted that the words in clause 56 should be given their plain and ordinary meanings, which were clear. Owners’ invocation of CONWARTIME as a risk allocation mechanism was misplaced, as CONWARTIME, and the “liberty” provisions within it were unrelated to the off-hire provisions in the charter party.

The judge found in favour of Charterers, and held that clause 56 should be construed in accordance with the “plain and obvious meaning of the words used in the clause”. Piracy was an off-hire event, being a “capture/seizure” within the meaning of clause 56, as the relevant capture/seizure was not required to be by “an authority”. The finding was in contrast to the earlier case of Cosco Bulk Carrier Co. Ltd v Team-Up Owning Co, Ltd, The “SALDANHA” [2010] in which the Court considered a clause similar to clause 56, but different in some respects, resulting in the vessel in that case being on-hire for the duration of a detention by pirates.
The judge also held that CONWARTIME related to the performance of the charter party and to breach, not to off-hire.

The case serves to underline, yet again, the importance of using clear words to allocate the risk of piratical events, 
to avoid the risk of subsequent disputes. For a more detailed analysis of the case:-

Courtesy Maritime Advocate Online a weekly digest of news and views on the maritime industries, with particular reference to dispute resolution. To contact the editor Bevis Marks, send an e-mail to: [email protected]

UK – Distracted Driving

The UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) issued the report of its investigation into the collision between the container ship SPRING BOK and the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) carrier GAS ARCTIC south of Dungeness on 24 March 2012. SPRING BOK was the overtaking vessel. Its officer of the watch was distracted by conversations on the bridge, was probably fatigued, and failed to see the other vessel visually (fog had reduced visibility to less than 2nm). Neither vessel had posted lookouts and neither was operating sound signals. Report 24/2012 (10/26/12). Note: This item was first brought to Mr. Bryant’s attention by Bryan Bittner of Eagle Shipping International. Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog – Bryant’s Maritime Consulting [email protected] Website © Dennis L. Bryant

Arguments Over Houseboats Take On Water

The case of Lozman v. City of Riviera Beach once seemed easy to capsulize in a single question: Is a houseboat a house or a boat? But as oral arguments unfolded before the Supreme Court, the issue became far more complicated. For one thing, was the focal point of the case even the houseboat, or was it just a floating home that should not be called any kind of boat? Fane Lozman’s ramshackle structure had French doors on three sides and no batteries because it depended on being plugged in for its electricity, like most homes. But in the years since Lozman bought it in Florida in 2002, he relocated it several times by moving it across water, which is something boats do. As a result, the question arose: what to do with structures like Lozman’s that are meant to stay moored, marking them seem more like homes, but in fact cam move people or things across water like a boat, when needed? The court’s answer is crucial to determining whether federal admiralty jurisdiction over boats should prevail, or ordinary state laws that govern houses or land structures should apply, when things go awry. Owners of floating casinos and pricey floating homes on Seattle are eyeing the case nervously. Each test crumbled as hypotheticals flew, from Justice Stephen Breyer’s Styrofoam “floating sofa” that could transport people or things across the water, to Justice Samuel Alito’s replica Viking boat, built for display in a museum, but seaworthy enough to float in a pinch. David Frederick of Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans & Figel, representing Riviera Beach, pressed for the “practical capability” test, and insisted that because Lozman’s home – and other structures like floating casinos – are capable of being used to transport things over water, they are vessels. That seemed too broad a definition for several justices. When Beyer resurrected his floating sofa example and asked if that is a vessel under Frederick’s definition, Frederick was noncommittal. “I’ve given up the absurd hypos because there is no litigation on them.” (, 10/1/2012)

Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

The Surveyor’s Bag

Some surveyors use a backpack, some a hold all, some a document case with wheels, I’ve even seen just a plastic bag, but they all have the same thing in common. They have to be like Doctor Who’s proverbial Tardis, i.e., externally small and compact but internally voluminous to take the plethora of equipment required to do the job.
First to be packed is the boiler suit or overalls, together with the working shoes or boots. The former can range from a sparkling white new boiler suit to a tatty, stained and torn shadow of its former self (The more experienced surveyor prefers the latter so as not to look like a beginner). The latter can range from a pair of trainers to steel capped leather boots. As some may not choose to launder their boiler suit on a regular basis with the boots rarely disinfected, it is advisable to stand well clear with no naked lights when a surveyor is opening his bag on site.

After these two essentials comes the flashlight, some surveyors clearly trying to prove something with a phallic multiple cell torch, others being more modest with a smaller, but just as powerful, model. Whichever is used, it will need to have batteries that last forever, be watertight, intrinsically safe and sturdy enough to survive being regularly dropped from great heights.

Then we have the compulsory notebook, pen and often a file containing case documents. The notebook is usually of A6 size, i.e., small enough to fit into the boiler suit breast pocket, but large enough to contain what pretends to be authoritative scribbling. Since this book may, on occasion, be a legal document, many surveyors have taken a leaf out of the lawyers’ book, writing illegibly and in gobbledygook so that nobody can understand or interpret the hieroglyphics. In this way the surveyor avoids any legal consequences. The pen, of course, has to last forever without any refills and again has to be sturdy enough to suffer the same fate as the flashlight.

A camera is again obligatory with weight being saved by the use of digital cameras. However, the macho surveyor must have the largest camera possible with a super zoom lens, whilst the more modest members of our profession have learned to keep it small and compact to save space and weight. The old adage about sparrows and “I’m not bragging but …..” comes to mind here.

Nowadays, many surveyors carry a laptop computer so that they can reduce downtime and start the report on site. These again can range in size, complexity and weight but are available in smaller and lighter sizes for those who travel often. Unfortunately, the digital camera, possible rechargeable flashlight and computer need regular recharging and thus many cables and adapters must be carried. Some will carry spare batteries for battery-operated equipment. The copper wire in the cables and batteries are in fact what add the majority of the weight to the bag. As batteries can be purchased anywhere, these could be omitted. A simple test of equipment before leaving base or the hotel room will reveal if replacements are needed.

Many surveyors like to carry emergency supplies around with them in the form of elastoplast, aspirin, cough drops, Imodium, etc, for the often self inflicted pain. Some used to carry a Swiss army knife, which came in handy on many occasions, sometimes, but rarely, for terminating the self inflicted pain! However, due to security concerns this, and many other useful tools, may not now be carried on flights.

Apart from the above standard items, the surveyor may be required to carry ultrasonic thickness testing equipment, ultrasound hatchcover testing equipment, specialised thermometers, moisture content meters, tape measures, rulers, paint thickness gauging equipment, gas and oxygen detectors, together with a hard hat, although most of the aforementioned may not need to be carried simultaneously.

The bag should also have space for the traveler’s wallet, containing passport, tickets, foreign currency, credit cards, loyalty programme cards, etc. The bag should therefore have the ability to be locked for security purposes.

As a consequence of the weight the straps will need to look trendy but be comprised of high tensile steel braiding.

Given the above, the surveyor must be a superman, but that’s another story!

Courtesy FLASHLIGHT, a free monthly e-newsletter circulated to more than 5,000 people involved in marine surveying around the world. It is circulated to anybody who wishes to receive a copy. It is a collation of articles relevant to our profession taken from various publications together with contributions from readers. Letters, opinions and articles relating to our profession are welcomed for the newsletter. [email protected]

Danish Maritime Accident Investigation Board Publishes “Maersk Champion” Fire Report

The DMAIB reports on the fire that occurred on board in early 2012.

On 9 January 2012, a fire broke out in the ship’s hospital of the AHTS vessel Maersk Champion that was engaged in tanker lifting/heading control off the Brazilian coast. The cause of the fire was self ignition by a chemical reaction between chlorine-containing granules and other chemical substances in a plastic box with medicine and chemical residues located in the ship’s hospital.

The fire was fought effectively by the ship’s crew but the ship’s hospital was burnt out and the adjoining compartments in the accommodation were also damaged as a result of the fire.

The Danish Maritime Accident Investigation Board has published a marine accident report about the incident. Courtesy Maritime Propulsion/Marine

Thanks to Capt. Kevin Mullen of Score Maritime Services for sending us the link. Capt. Mullen, who specializes in loss control surveys of towing vessels notes that it is not uncommon to encounter chlorine tablets in the engine rooms ot towing vessels. The proximity of chlorine to oily bilges presents a real hazard.

TT Club Urges Container Weight Verification

The TT Club, a mutual insurance association, urged all participants at the International Maritime Organization’s session on Dangerous Goods, Solid Cargoes and Containers to redouble their efforts to come up with a global regulation to verify the weights of containers. The London-based insurer said such a regulation is crucial to the safety of container ships in view of the fact that the erroneous declaration of container weights has been identified in a number of recent high-profile maritime disasters such as those involving the MSC Napoli, Riverdance and Husky Racer. “The Club is in a unique position to speak on this issue, insuring not only something in excess of 80 percent of all maritime containers but also with an insurable interest in ports handling around 50 percent of the world’s containerized freight,” said Peregrine Storrs-Fox, TT Club’s risk management director. (Journal of Commerce, 9/28/2012) Courtesy AIMU Weekly Bulletin.

Maritime Labour Convention To Benefit Large Yacht Sector

Next year’s introduction of the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) 2006 should bring important benefits to the large yacht sector.

The convention is due to come into effect in August 2013, setting new standards for working conditions, accommodation and recreational facilities, welfare, and social security.

‘The yachting sector has been planning for the arrival of MLC 2006, and the resulting stronger regulation of the sector, for many years now,’ said Garry Elliott, membership and recruitment national secretary.

‘It is welcomed as a means of improving the working conditions of crew and ensuring that safety remains a priority. When it was first announced, many predicted that it would have a detrimental impact on the industry and cause many job losses, but most of these concerns have not come to pass.

‘Yacht designers have embraced the new rules and have been working to ensure that newbuilds comply with the rules before they even come into force, and crewing agencies are looking at what documents and policies they need in order to be fully compliant,’ Mr. Elliott added.

‘Nautilus has been particularly active in helping crew and crewing agencies understand what is required of them and ensuring that they have the necessary information. Part of this was completed with the launch of the Service Record Book last year, which helps yachting crew keep accurate records of training and sea time. ‘The second part is the signing of collective bargaining agreements with crewing agencies and we hope to have the first of these signed in the coming weeks,’ he said.

‘These CBAs ensure that crew have proper terms and conditions of employment, rates of pay and hours of work — a requirement of the MLC. We have already had many enquiries from interested organisations and we believe that the signing of the first CBA will provide the tipping point and many other agencies will follow.’

Courtesy FLASHLIGHT, a free monthly e-newsletter circulated to more than 5,000 people involved in marine surveying around the world. It is circulated to anybody who wishes to receive a copy. It is a collation of articles relevant to our profession taken from various publications together with contributions from readers. Letters, opinions and articles relating to our profession are welcomed for the newsletter. [email protected]

UK – Lifeboat Drill Casualty

The UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) issued the report of its investigation of two men overboard from a cruise ship while conducting a lifeboat drill alongside the berth at Southampton on 29 March 2012. During the drill, while the lifeboat was being held alongside Deck 9, difficulty was encountered in releasing the forward bowsing rope from the bitts. When the release lever was operated manually, the rope released suddenly, heeling the lifeboat to one side and dropping the two men on the roof of the lifeboat into the water 22 meters below, where they incurred minor injuries. Investigation revealed that the problem with the bowsing rope had been identified during refit, but not remedied. In addition, the ship’s safety management system had not fully addressed training and procedures for lifeboat operations. Report 25-2012 (11/8/12) and Bryan Bittner of Eagle Bulk Shipping. Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog – Bryant’s Maritime Consulting [email protected] Website © Dennis L. Bryant

Court – COGSA Decision

In a Summary Order, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the district court award of summary judgment in favor of certain cargo owners on all claims asserted against them in consolidated maritime actions stemming from a March 8, 2005 explosion on the M/V Rickmers Genoa, which occurred approximately four hours after that vessel collided with the M/V Sun Cross in the Yellow Sea. Plaintiffs had brought their claims based on: (1) strict liability under the Carriage of Goods at Sea Act (COGSA); (2) negligent failure to warn under COGSA; (3) negligent misrepresentation under federal maritime common law; and (4) negligent failure to warn under federal maritime common law. Defendant’s cargo consisted of 600 tons of a magnesium-based desulphurization reagent, which had been loaded below deck. The collision breached the ship’s hull, allowing sweater to flood the cargo holds. The seawater reacted with the magnesium, yielding flammable hydrogen gas. The accumulated gas ignited and exploded, causing significant damage to the ship and cargo and killing one crewmember. Evidence showed that the cargo owner gave the carrier a US Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) Code identifying the cargo as a magnesium-based substance and that the master of the vessel knew that magnesium emitted highly flammable hydrogen when exposed to water. The carrier, with such knowledge, accepted the cargo and loaded it in an enclosed space below deck. The cargo owner did not breach any duty owed to the carrier. Chem One Ltd v. MV Rickmers Genoa, No. 10-4934-cv(L) (2nd Cir., November 9, 2012). Note: This item was submitted to Bryant by Keith Heard of Burke & Parsons.

Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog – Bryant’s Maritime Consulting [email protected] Website © Dennis L. Bryant


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