President’s Corner November/December 2014

Well after that recent cold front, I think fall is gone in many areas.  I trust our friends in and near the Snow Belt have safely avoided the fall out from too much snow and a rapid melt.
We had the Fall NAMSGlobal Board of Directors meeting in Warwick, Rhode Island to correspond with the New England Regional Conference.  We had ten of the BOD in person, two by phone and the remainder by Proxy.  It was also attended by several local members and some members had traveled in for the meeting. We had a general state of the organization discussion and I again stressed each member pay attention to their CE credits.  They are what make a social organization, a professional one.

Some highlights of the BOD meeting were:
1.     The election of Desmond Connolly to Retired Life Member.  He has been a great supporter and a loyal advocate for NAMSGlobal for many years’ including Regional and National service.  We thank him for his service and wish him well in the future.
2.    An expanded marketing budget was approved to get the organization more visibility.
3.    The new website should be ready mid next year.
4.    IAMWS is accepting applications as of December 1
5.    Some additional ways for getting CE credits were proposed and accepted
6.    The strategic plan was passed
7.    An exciting addition to Yachts and Small Craft was a Damage Sub Designation was developed.  Check in with Jonathan Klopman, Kevin Bache or Roy Smith for more details.  This was a passionate and well-developed presentation and discussion.
8.    As well as a whole host of other items that make an organization run.

Thanks to Doug Mentuck and New England Region for hosting the fine regional meeting on Friday.  The speakers and the forum were excellent.  I would recommend attendance anytime.

Frank Hawthorne ([email protected]) is looking for creative ways that folks have fulfilled their Continuing Education (all of course within the boundaries of the Ethics Code).  Please let him know so he can make a list to assist us all in maintaining our credentials.

Don’t forget to get the spring conference on your agenda.  It is March 29 to April 1 at the Embassy Suites in Sacramento, California.  John Venneman, NAMSGlobal Vice President and the local region are hard at work putting the conference together.

One of the biggest complaints I receive from customers of surveyors deals with report and survey quality (obviously our product so that is a concern).  There are many fine surveyors in this organization that can support you in this and many will share their reports.  Be careful using canned reports or boilerplate, as sometimes they are not thorough.  Additionally, be sure you stay up to date on the rules and regulations especially in the rapidly changing regulatory environment around fishing vessels and towboats.  Don’t ever assume you can stop learning and reading.  Reach out and challenge the Technical Committees to come up with more relevant and targeted training.  That is their job – let’s keep NAMSGlobal in the forefront!

Please contact the undersigned, the Executive Committee or your Regional Vice President if you have questions, concerns or want to volunteer.

Best Regards,
Steven P. Weiss, NAMS-CMS


NAMS Applicants

New Applicants
Name Status & Discipline Applying For Region Sponsor(s)
Hugo Carver Upgrading to Associate, Y&S Craft S. Pacific L. Lester, G. LeBaron & R. Reisner
Anthony Barnes NAMS-CMS / Cargo E. Gulf Hipolito Almoite
C.J. Brustowicz NAMS-CMS/Y&S E. Gulf Robert Lynn


New Members Elected 23 October 2014

Name Discipline Region Sponsor(s)
Jeffrey Johnson NAMS-CMS / H&M E. Gulf James Johnson
Patrick Folan Associate / H&M E. Gulf Richard Schiehl, Neil Rosen, Mike Schiehl


Members Change in Status

CMS Members Retiring
Richard Barren Retiring W. Gulf Region
Peter Britton Retiring S. Pacific
Desmond Connolly Retiring – Elected Life Member N. England
Frank Daniel Retired E. Gulf
Anastasios Makropoulos Retiring G. Lakes
Thomas Maude Retired G. Lakes
Manmohan Talwar Retiring E. Canada
Gerald Poliskey Retiring C. Pacific
John (Bob) Illg Retiring East Gulf Region
Ronald M. Reisner Retiring North Pacific Region
John Marples Retiring New England Region
Jay McEwen Retiring North Pacific Region
Jamie Theriault Retiring North Pacific Region
Thomas Maude Retiring East Canada Region
CMS To Inactive
William Quick, CMS Inactive N. York


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.


Karl Reiter Retired Life Member died Saturday, October 18th. Karl joined NAMS in 1977, retired in 2004 and was elected to Life Membership. Karl was active on the West Gulf regional screening committee since 1982.
Douglas B. Cameron A Texas member.   Mr. Cameron joined NAMS in 2008, then went into our “Inactive” status, he died June 30th after a brief illness.


Upcoming Educational Events



Upcoming Classes:

  • ABYC Introduction to Basic Marine Electric & Corrosion Protection (Bayfield, WI)
  • Marine Electrical Certification (Bellingham, WA)
  • ABYC Marine Systems Certification Fast Trac (Lansing, MI)
  • ABYC Composite Boat Builder Certification (Brunswick, ME)

Click here to view the full class calendar.

Contact Sandy Brown to host a class and get a free seat in the certification class! If you are unable to attend the above listed courses please review the ABYC Education Calendar for a course or seminar in your area:

ME215-Performing Machinery and Equipment Valuations for Financial Reporting Purposes

January 22-25, 2015; Las Vegas, Nevada

This course will outline the applicable standards, what the role of the MTS appraiser plays as part of the valuation team, a review of various valuation techniques and how to handle the numerous questions arising from the audit review process.  Please Note: This is an advanced course that assumes students are familiar with basic appraisal techniques. Additionally students will be learn to:
-Understand of the standards that apply to valuations performed for financial reporting purposes;
-Apply valuable cost and market approach tools which can be used in most types of valuation; and
-Understand how to “survive” the audit review process.
CE: 27 hours Price: $1,020 Member; $1,120 Non-Member


The National Association of Marine Surveyors, Inc. (NAMSGlobal) will hold its 53rd National Marine Conference (Sunday through Tuesday) at the Embassy Suites Sacramento Riverfront Promenade, 100 Capitol Mall, Sacramento, CA. 95814. The room Rate is $139, plus taxes.

To make your reservations:Go to and select your arrival and departure dates, number of rooms, etc., then click on Add Special Rate Code and using the group/convention code (NMS) and complete your reservation. Actually, you will have a second opportunity to enter your group code before you complete your reservation.Or you can telephone reservations at 916.326.5000 and ask for the NAMS Annual Conference discount rate.

Educational Calendar – 2014/2015

Upcoming Opportunities!  Students have two options: attend the classroom in person or remotely. You can attend from anywhere in the U.S. We provide you with a link to videoconference into the classroom. Turn on your computer, dial your phone (or turn on your computer speakers) and attend. This includes video and audio capability using Microsoft Live Meeting! You will have the ability to see, hear, and ask questions of the instructor. Education credits are available for in-class attendees (brokers and agents only). Registrations are open at Applying for CE credits for all 2015 classes.


Marine Cargo Consultants, Inc. will be hosting a three-day school of instruction on the practice of draft surveys in Morehead City, North Carolina. Limited to 10 students, the program will take the mystery out of the science of accurately determining a vessel’s weight by water displacement. Designed for the student who has little or no previous draft survey experience, 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. Using surveys and publications collected from actual vessels attended by the instructor, attention will be directed toward
practical application rather than only text book instruction. Class will take place February 20, 21 & 22 (Fri – Sat – Sun) in the Maritime Building at the NC State Port Authority – Morehead City. Although the course of instruction will focus on ship surveys (both metric and imperial system of measurement), inland barge surveys will also be addressed. Participants will be granted 18 CE credits by both NAMS & SAMS. Lunch each day will be provided.

For a complete course description, please visit or direct your inquiry to: 1-800-567-6294 / Outside USA 202-239-2729


Feature Article

Surveying Passenger Carrying Vessels
Used on Sole State Waters

Southwest Passage Marine Surveys
Randall B. Sharpe, AMS, SAMS
Sharpe Surveying & Consulting

Most states don’t have standards for vessels carrying passengers on sole state waters. While they usually license operators under rules for “Outfitter Guide Boat Operator” or “For Hire Vessel Operator” or similar descriptions, and generally specify safety equipment such as PFDs, fire extinguishers, etc., surveys are normally not required. Recently the Oregon State Marine Board began requiring “Charter Boats” (defined as vessels carrying more than six passengers on sole state waters) to have surveys completed every three years by a NAMS-CMS or SAMS, AMS marine surveyor. In addition those vessels must have documentation of a stability test and capacity designation from either the builder, or a naval architect who is a registered professional engineer.

The purpose of this article is to discuss recommendations for standards to be used when surveying passenger vessels carrying more than six passengers on sole state waters. It is recommended that vessels carrying six or fewer passengers on those waters should be surveyed as one would survey a USCG designated uninspected passenger vessel (UPV), commonly referred to as a six-pack, using USCG regulations, ABYC and NFPA standards as well as any state requirements.


For the purposes of this article:

  • Cargo is defined as any gear that is not part of the vessel’s normal required complement of equipment.
  • A passenger is defined as any person aboard the vessel, not including the operator.
  • A passenger for hire is defined as any person aboard the vessel, not including the operator when one or more of the passengers have paid consideration for carriage.
  • Gear is defined as all items not a part of the vessel’s normal required complement of equipment.
  • Gear normally carried aboard a vessel would include bottled water, coolers, gear bags, fishing equipment, etc.


Unless the surveyor is qualified to perform stability calculations and tests and determine the passenger carrying capacity of a vessel, the surveyor should make no comments on these issues. Surveyors in states which do not require these evaluations should recommend them as part of their report.

An argument can be made that if the state does not require a stability test and the surveyor does not recommend one the report is  lacking in a critical aspect of safety.  In those circumstances a case could be made that the surveyor accepted the lack of a stability report and accepted whatever passenger carrying capacity the owner used for the vessel in question without reasonable proof of the vessel capability and may be liable in a civil action after an injury.

Should the vessel have stability documents the surveyor should review them and recognize that the vessel he is surveying will be carrying the number of passengers as documented. If the surveyor is uncomfortable with the documentation they should say so in the report. An  issue that may call the stability information into question would be the age of stability information. Any changes that may have been made to the vessel since they were created could affect the vessels passenger carrying capacity and/or its stability.

In addition, stability evaluation criteria may have changed. Prior to 1 December 2011, 140 or 160 lbs. were the assumed average weight per person (AAWPP) the USCG used for small passenger vessels depending on route. Since 1 December 2011, the USCG has used an AAWPP of 185 lbs. in accordance with (IAW) 46 CFR 170.090(g). Prior to a survey I was presented by an owner with a statement from the builder stating the vessel could carry so many pounds and thus so many passengers. Reviewing the calculations I determined that the builder had used the old 160 lb. passenger standard and not the current 185 lb. standard. This reduced the amount of passengers the vessel could carry from twelve to ten. I included my calculations in my report and the vessel was subsequently licensed for the smaller capacity based on the 185 lb. standard.

The weight a vessel can carry must also account for the gear. Another time I was presented with a statement from the builder stating the vessel could carry so many pounds and thus so many passengers. Reviewing those calculations I found the builder had used the 185 lb. standard but had left no room in the calculations for gear. I included my calculations in my report and the vessel was subsequently licensed for a capacity of one less passenger then the builder specified, the remaining 185 lbs. being for gear. Subsequently the owner told me that since he never had more than half a tank of the gas when he took the vessel out, the savings in weight could be used to carry the additional passenger. Keeping a straight face is often important when surveying vessels and dealing with clients.  However, the fuel tank was installed low in the vessel and the reduced fuel likely actually reduced the vessel stability.  The Coast Guard simplified stability test requires that all tankage be ¾ full during the proof test.=


Obviously the surveyor should be familiar with any state requirements and report that the vessel was surveyed to those standards.


It is recommended that 46 CFR Subchapter T, Small Passenger Vessel (Under 100 Gross Tons) should be the standard used when surveying passenger vessels carrying more than six passengers on sole state waters. This assumes that the vessel is under 100 GT, which is expected to be the case for the overwhelming majority of vessels a surveyor will see in these circumstances. It is recommended that larger vessels be surveyed under 46 CFR Chapter I, Subchapter H, Passenger Vessels (applicable to vessels over 100 GT), or 46 CFR Chapter I, Subchapter K, Small Passenger Vessels Carrying More Than 150 Passengers Or With Overnight Accommodations For More Than 49 Passengers, whichever is applicable. Surveying those larger passenger vessels will not be discussed in this article. Selected areas of 46 CFR Subchapter T are discussed below.  This is by no means a full list of what the surveyor should be checking.  The Coast Guard inspection check list is published as the CG-840T booklet.  It can be printed out from the Coast Guard forms website and used as a guide when conducting passenger carrying vessel surveys.

Machinery Installation. 46 CFR 182.130 Alternate Standards states that: ”As an alternative to complying with the provisions of this part, a vessel of not more than 19.8 meters (65 feet) in length, carrying not more than 12 passengers, and propelled by gasoline or diesel internal combustion engines, other than a High Speed Craft, may comply with ABYC H-2, ABYC H-22, ABYC H-24, ABYC H-25, ABYC H-32, ABYC H-33, ABYC P-1, and ABYC P-4 (all eight standards incorporated by reference, see 46 CFR 175.600) as specified in this part.“ These are very specific standards that may be used as an alternative to what is contained in Subchapter T for specific items; they are not all encompassing as a simple replacement of the machinery regulations in Subchapter T.  A careful read of Subchapter T is required to ensure that the specific requirements are met for the alternate use of the ABYC standard that applies.

Electrical Installation. 45 CFR 183 Electrical Installation, 46 CFR 183.130 Alternate Standards, states that:

(a) A vessel, other than a high speed craft, of not more than 19.8 meters (65 feet) in length carrying not more than 12 passengers, may comply with the following requirements instead of complying with the requirements of this part in their entirety:

(1) Section 183.420 [Note: this refers to navigation lights]; and

(2) The following American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) Projects where applicable:  Again the “where applicable” wording must be closely reviewed.

(i) E-8, “Alternating Current (AC) Electrical Systems on Boats;”

(ii) E-9, “Direct Current (DC) Electrical Systems on Boats;” and

(iii) A-16, “Electrical Navigation Lights.”

(b) A vessel with an electrical installation operating at less than 50 volts may meet the requirements in 33 CFR 183.430instead of those in § 183.340 of this part.

For vessels that meet the above criteria, ABYC Standards, familiar to every NAMS-CMS or SAMS, AMS yacht and small craft surveyor, are highly recommended.

Seating.  This is covered under 46 CFR 177.820. Pertinent requirements are 46 CFR 177.820 (b) “A seat must be constructed to minimize the possibility of injury and avoid trapping occupants,” and (c) “Installation of seats must provide for ready escape.”

46 CFR 177.820 (d) (4) states that: “Seats used to determine the number of passengers permitted, in accordance with § 176.113(b)(3) of this chapter, must be secured to the deck, bulkhead, or bulwark.” Note 46 CFR does not specify that seats are required to have backs. If a seat does not have a back but it is permanently installed, surveyors should use their best judgment as to the suitability of its use for a passenger (who may be less than robust) and the security of its connection to the vessel. The vessel’s route and operations may dictate whether a seat back is in order. A vessel that travels at high speed or on rough waters would probably require seat backs.  This is one example of where the surveyor’s judgment is critical.  Don’t just read the black and white regulations.

46 CFR 166.113 (b) (3) Fixed seating criterion states that.: “One passenger may be permitted for each 455 millimeters (18 inches) of width of fixed seating provided by §177.820 of this subchapter.” It is recommended that all seating, especially bench seats, be measured to ensure that they meet these criteria as part of evaluating the vessel’s passenger for-hire carrying capacity.

Deck Rails.  The applicable standard is 46 CFR 177.900 Deck Rails. 46 CFR 177.900 (a) requires: “Except as otherwise provided in this section, rails or equivalent protection must be installed near the periphery of all decks of a vessel accessible to passengers or crew. Equivalent protection may include lifelines, wire rope, chains, and bulwarks, which provide strength and support equivalent to fixed rails. Deck rails must include a top rail with the minimum height required by this section, and lower courses or equivalent protection as required by this section.”

This section should be read thoroughly when determining the height required for the deck rails on the vessel being surveyed. Heights range from 30” to 39.5” and there is a proviso in 46 CFR 177.900 (f) which states: “A sailing vessel, an open boat, or any other vessel not specifically covered elsewhere in this section, must have rails of a minimum height or equivalent protection as considered necessary by the cognizant OCMI, based on the vessel’s operation, route, and seating arrangement.” Since you are, in effect, acting as the OCMI, this gives you some discretion as to height. However a surveyor should use common sense when determining if a height is appropriate and be able to defend his decision.

46 CFR 177.900 (b) states that: “Deck rails must be designed and constructed to withstand a point load of 91 kilograms (200 pounds) applied at any point in any direction, and a uniform load of 74 kilograms per meter (50 pounds per foot) applied to the top rail in any direction. The point and uniform loads do not need to be applied simultaneously.” If a surveyor feels a deck rail cannot withstand the loads indicated, testing is indicated. One preliminary test would be to lean against a deck rail and see if it gives. The question would be whether the railing could support someone who trips in a seaway or otherwise loses their footing and falls into a deck rail. Would the rail support them or would it fail, sending that person overboard?

Means of Escape. 46 CFR 177.500 (a) Means of Escape states that: “Except as otherwise provided in this section, each space accessible to passengers or used by the crew on a regular basis, must have at least two means of escape, one of which must not be a watertight door.” Unless a vessel is built to the standard of 46 CFR Subchapter T it is unlikely it can meet this requirement without substantial refit.

The “except as otherwise provided in this section” above refers to 46 CFR 177.500 (o) which states that: “Only one means of escape is required from a space where:

(1) The space has a deck area less than 30 square meters (322 square feet);

(2) There is no stove, heater, or other source of fire in the space;

(3) The means of escape is located as far as possible from a machinery space or fuel tank; and

(4) If an accommodation space, the single means of escape does not include a deck scuttle or a ladder.“

46 CFR 177.500 (p) states that: “Alternative means of escape from spaces may be provided if acceptable to the cognizant OCMI.”  This section has been applied to vessels with narrow beam to allow a compromise in the minimum width of a required escape.  The Coast Guard has accepted escapes of 24 inches in width where it can be  shown that a full size person wearing a Type I PFD can easily pass through the escape.

When surveying a vessel, surveyors should read this section carefully and determine how passengers, some not so spry, would escape from below or from an upper deck in the event of an emergency. Since, in effect, you are the cognizant OCMI, is there an alternate means of escape that could be provided without a major refit? Are there areas of the vessel that should be posted off limits to passengers for hire in order to meet these criteria?

Stairs and Handrails. These should be surveyed not only for their use as a means of escape, as discussed above, but also for their use in the normal movement of passengers for hire aboard the vessel. Stairways are defined in 46 CFR 175.400 as “an inclined means of escape between two decks.” However, other than their mention in 46 CFR 177.500 (a), above, their dimensions and other requirements are not given.

46 CFR 72.05-20 Stairways, ladders, and elevators, from 46 CFR Subchapter H Passenger Vessels, does lay out dimension and other requirements, but goes on to state in 46 CFR 72.05-20 (a) (2): “For small vessels, special consideration for relief may be given where it is shown to be unreasonable or impracticable to meet the detailed requirements for stairway size, slope, dimensioning, and landing area.” This undoubtedly covers the majority of the vessels surveyors will be looking at. In effect, surveyors should use their best judgment and be able to defend it. One point of note: 46 CFR 72.05-20(k) states “For all types of stairways, the stair width shall be clear of all obstructions other than the handrails.” Threshold plates are a possible tripping hazard.  In evaluating stairs the surveyor should be particularly mindful of the rise and run of the treads to ensure that they are of equal dimensions.   The OSHA regulations may also be used as a guide when evaluating stair dimensions.

Stair handrail dimensions and sizes are discussed in 46 CFR 72.05-20(k), which states: “For all types of stairways, handrails shall be fitted on both sides of the stairs. For stairways in excess of 66 inches in width, additional center handrails shall be provided. All handrails shall be fitted at a vertical height above the tread at its nosing of between 33 and 36 inches.”  This again is from the larger passenger vessel regulations.  Generally for smaller stairs the convention is to have a hand rail on the right side when descending.

The types and sizes of handrails are not specified in 46 CFR. However, par. of American Society of Testing and Materials Standard Practice for Human Engineering Design for Marine Systems, Equipment and Facilities (ASTM 1166-07) approved 1 January 2007, recommends handrails be 1½” in diameter. This standard also requires that handrails start at the top of the stairs and run all the way to the bottom.

Tread covering is not specified, either. However par. 11.2.4. ASTM 1166-07 recommends that the treads on the stairs should be made of a non-skid material.

Heating and Cooking. The applicable section is 46 CFR 184 Subpart B, Heating and Cooking. 46 CFR 184.200 General states that: “Cooking and heating equipment must be suitable for marine use. Equipment designed and installed in accordance with American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) A-3, ‘Galley Stoves,’ and A-7, ‘Boat Heating Systems,’ or with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 302, ‘Pleasure and Commercial Motor Craft,’ complies with this requirement, except as restricted by § 184.202 of this part.”

Other sections pertaining to Gas Systems (46 CFR 184.240) will also be familiar to yacht and small craft surveyors, as they refer to such ABYC standards as ABYC A-1, Marine Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) Systems; ABYC A-22, Marine Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Systems; and Chapter 8, Cooking Heating and Auxiliary Appliances, NFPA 302.

Fire Protection. Fire protection comes under 46 CFR 181 Fire Protection Equipment. These requirements include:

  • 46 CFR 181 Subpart C Fire Main System. This includes a fire pump, fire main and hydrants, hoses and nozzles. Fire pumps are required by 46 CFR 181.300 (a): “A self-priming, power driven fire pump must be installed on each vessel:

(i) Of not more than 19.8 meters (65 feet) in length which is a ferry vessel;

(ii) Of not more than 19.8 meters (65 feet) in length that carries more than 49 passengers; or

(iii) Of more than 19.8 meters (65 feet) in length.”

Note however that 46 CFR 181.610 Fire bucket states: “A vessel not required to have a power driven fire pump by § 181.300must have at least three 9.5 liter (2 1/2 gallon) buckets, with an attached lanyard satisfactory to the cognizant OCMI, placed so as to be easily available during an emergency. The words “FIRE BUCKET” must be stenciled in a contrasting color on each bucket.”

  • 46 CFR 181 Subpart D Fixed Fire Extinguishing and Detecting Systems. As with any section this should be read carefully. Basically it says if the vessel has an enclosed machinery space, that space requires a fixed fire extinguishing system. If the machinery space is so small that there is no room for a fixed fire extinguishing system to be installed, then it is recommended that the provisions of par. ABYC Standard A-4 Fire Fighting Equipment or Section NPFA 302 be used. They both recommend that a discharge port be installed into the machinery space to allow for a portable fire extinguisher with a nozzle to be discharged into the machinery space. This eliminates the need to lift the machinery space cover (thus adding air to the fire) in order to fight a machinery space fire.
  • Overnight accommodation spaces for passengers are required to have smoke detecting systems that comply with 46 CFR 181.450, Independent modular smoke detecting units. This states: “An independent modular smoke detecting unit must:

(1) Meet UL 217 (incorporated by reference, see 46 CFR 175.600) and be listed as a ‘Single Station Smoke detector—Also suitable for use in Recreational Vehicles,’ or other standard specified by the Commandant;

(2) Contain an independent power source; and

(3) Alarm on low power.”

This is similar to the requirements of Section 12.2, NFPA 302.

  • 46 CFR 181.400 (d) requires “All griddles, broilers, and deep fat fryers must be fitted with a grease extraction hood in compliance with § 181.425.”
  • 46 CFR 181.425 Galley hood fire extinguishing systems states:

“(a) A grease extraction hood required by 46 CFR 181.400 must meet UL 710 (incorporated by reference, see 46 CFR 175.600) or other standard specified by the Commandant.

(b) A grease extraction hood must be equipped with a dry or wet chemical fire extinguishing system meeting the applicable sections of NFPA 17 or NFPA 17A (both incorporated by reference, see 46 CFR 175.600), or other standard specified by the Commandant, and must be listed by an independent laboratory recognized by the Commandant.”

If the vessel has a galley and prepares food for passengers, it will in all likelihood be licensed and inspected by local health authorities. If that is the case the vessel will probably comply with 46 CFR 181.425, as UL 710 is Exhaust Hoods for Commercial Cooking Equipment.

  • 46 CFR 181 Subpart E Portable Fire Extinguishers. Table 181.500 (a) lists the minimum number of portable fire extinguishers as well as their size, type and placement.
  • 46 CFR 181.600 Fire Axe states: “A vessel of more than 19.8 meters (65 feet) in length must have at least one fire axe located in or adjacent to the primary operating station.”

PFDs. The USCG requires small inspected passenger vessels to carry USCG Type I Life Jackets IAW 46 CFR 180.71. The USCG also requires uninspected passenger vessels to carry Type I PFD Life Preservers IAW 46 CFR 25.25-5 (c). Type I PFDs have the advantage of turning an unconscious person face up in the water. Only Type I PFDs should be carried on these vessels as well as the required number of Type IV (throwable) PFDs. Type I PFDs should also be equipped with lights if the vessel carries passengers at night. The USCG requirements of immediately and readily accessible should be a consideration as well as cleanliness and condition. It should be recommended that the Type IV (throwable) PFDs have a heaving line attached to them. This allows for the person in the water to be pulled back to the vessel or easy retrieval if the thrown PFD misses the person in the water.

Conclusion. As can be seen, a NAMS-CMS or SAMS-AMS yacht and small craft surveyor has knowledge of the ABYC and NPFA 302 standards called out in 46 CFR Subchapter T. This gives them a good basis as a start for surveying these vessels on sole state waters. The surveyor should be familiar with all sections of 46 CFR Subchapter T and any state requirements before performing this type of survey.

Surveyors are also reminded of the ethical requirements of performing these surveys. The NAMS Code of Ethics states:  “Surveyors shall perform services only in their areas of their expertise.” The SAMS Code of Ethics and Rules of Practice states that: “The surveyor will: Accept only assignments that can be completed with professional competence.” This applies particularly to stability testing and passenger capacity designation.


Articles of Interest

USCG Towing Vessel National Center of Expertise

The latest Unified Agenda, published on November 21, 2014, now indicates publication of Sub “M” is planned for August 2015.More information is available at:

The Coast Guard has issued a new Marine Safety Alert (10-14) titled Preventing Barge Explosions.

This safety alert was developed to raise awareness and highlight critical lessons learned from actual incidents.  The Safety Alert can be read and downloaded at:

The Coast Guard has issued a new Marine Safety Alert (11-14) to remind barge operators of their obligation to meet current barge lighting regulations.

The Safety Alert can be read and downloaded at:

The Coast Guard has issued a Marine Safety Alert (09-14) which discusses consequences of failing to consider air draft and to properly calculate a vessel’s vertical clearance while operating a vessel.

The Safety Alert can be read and downloaded at:

The Coast Guard has published a final rule that makes non-substantive changes to its regulations.

This final rule makes conforming amendments and technical corrections to the Coast Guard’s Inland Navigation Rules and is effective as of November 18, 2014.The final Rule can be read and downloaded at:

The Coast Guard seeks applications for membership on the Towing Safety Advisory Committee for a three-year term commencing September 30, 2015.

More information is available from Coast Guard Maritime Commons:

USCG – Marine Safety Engineering Newsletter

The US Coast Guard posted its Marine Safety Engineering Newsletter for Fall 2014 [located at ]. This edition covers, among other things, non-intrusive load monitoring for ships’ electrical systems. (11/26/14).  Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog

International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) Boats 47 Percent Increase Over Previous Show, by Amy Riemer, Marine Business World

Organizers of the International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) announced that the 2014 event, which took place in Tampa, Florida September 30 through October 2, attracted 6,900 attendees, a 47 percent increase compared to 2013. IBEX, the industry’s premier trade show, drew marine industry professionals from around the globe to learn about and explore the newest in marine innovation from 558 exhibiting companies – a 15 percent increase in exhibitor participation compared to the 2013 show.

‘IBEX in Tampa offered an impressive increase in our attendance and exhibitor participation and a significant WOW factor,’ said Anne Dunbar, Show Director of IBEX. ‘The new products and technologies introduced this year were incredible, and you could feel the excitement and enthusiasm all three days of the show.’

In addition to the spike in attendance and exhibitors, seminar registration was up with more than 500 attendees participating, an increase of six percent from 2013; and there was a 35 percent increase in international attendance from 2013.

The growth of the 2014 IBEX was a reflection of the state of the boating industry. Thom Dammrich, president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA), who presented at the Industry Breakfast, stated, ‘We’re anticipating good times ahead for recreational boating. The industry continues to see healthy growth with retail expenditures increasing 3.2% in 2013 to $36.9 billion. Americans are taking to the water in record numbers, and we’re anticipating continued steady growth of 5-7% in new powerboat sales through 2014. Now is the time for marine innovation.’

IBEX attendees were able to experience and learn about the latest products during the three-day event. There were a record number of new products on display and Innovation Awards’ participants, as well as new on-the-water demonstrations, multiple networking events, and educational seminars and workshops.

The 2015 IBEX is scheduled to take place at the Kentucky Exposition Center, September 15 – 17, in Louisville, KY USA.

For more information, please visit IBEX Show.

Coast Guard Urges Safe Tank Barge Cleaning to Prevent Explosions, by Casey Conley, Professional Mariner E-newsletter

The U.S. Coast Guard is recommending that personnel involved with tank cleaning, stripping or gas freeing of flammable cargoes review industry safety guidelines.

As a result of recent casualties involving explosions during tank cleaning, the Oct. 9 alert highlights the importance of following safety procedures based on international standards. In those incidents, key personnel didn’t follow procedures outlined in an operating manual, the alert said.

“A review of related casualties has revealed that vessel personnel, facility personnel and shoreside managers failed to ensure that established procedures and safe practices were followed,” the Coast Guard said in the alert.

“Specifically, the operational manuals and regulatory requirements were not routinely followed by those involved. As a result, unintended and disastrous consequences occurred.”

The alert said crews should follow the International Safety Guide for Oil Tankers and Terminals (ISGOTT), 5th edition, and take steps to ensure those guidelines are followed.

After reviewing the ISGOTT standards, the alert recommends that supervisors and other key personnel make sure company manuals are complete and that staff are properly trained and credentialed. It recommends minimizing other vessel operations near the facility during tank cleaning or gas freeing to reduce ignition sources.

To view the Coast Guard’s full Safety Alert, click here.

Casualty flashback: November 1975

SS Edmund Fitzgerald went down in Lake Superior 39 years ago next month, killing all 29 crew. The accident occurred during a severe storm that produced 30-foot waves and hurricane-force winds.

The accident occurred as the vessel was sailing from Superior, Wis., to a steel mill near Detroit, with more than 26,500 tons of taconite pellets. The vessel sank Nov. 10, 1975, roughly 17 miles outside Whitefish Bay.

Although most believe the storm caused the 729-foot Edmund Fitzgerald to go down, the exact cause has never been determined. Theories about the accident suggest a flooded cargo hold, grounding on a shoal, topside damage or structural damage brought down the massive freighter.

The lack of watertight bulkheads, poor weather forecasting, inaccurate navigational charts and complacency by the captain and crew possibly contributed to the accident.

Edmund Fitzgerald remains the largest vessel to sink in the Great Lakes. The accident spurred several regulatory changes, including requirements that ships carry survival suits, new navigational aids and EPIRBs.

It also resulted in more accurate navigational charts, a new annual Coast Guard inspection program and new models for predicting wave heights.Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog – Bryant’s Maritime Consulting [email protected]  Website © Dennis L. Bryant

Australia – vessel breakaways during heavy weather

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) issued the preliminary report of its investigation into the 17 August 2014 breakaway of the car carrier Grand Pioneer and the general cargo ship AAL Fremantle were berthed at the quay in Fremantle stern to stern. During cargo discharge operations, a rapid increase in wind speed caused both ships’ stern to break away and the ships swung bow to the wind. The AAL Fremantle made contact with another vessel and with an adjacent railroad bridge. Initial analysis revealed that a bollard, with all of AAL Fremantle’s and two of Grand Pioneer’s five stern lines, failed. MO-2014-009[located at ]  Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog – Bryant’s Maritime Consulting [email protected]  Website © Dennis L. Bryant

Australia Engine Room Fire

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) issued the preliminary report of its investigation into an engine room fire on board the bulk carrier Marigold at Port Hedland on 13 July 2014. Evidence indicates that a fuel oil pipe coupling on number one diesel generator failed. Pressurized fuel oil and mist ignited resulting in a fire around the generator turbocharger. The ship’s Halon gas fixed fire suppression system was activated, but a full release of Halon gas did not occur and the engine room was not properly closed. Consequently, the fire continued for about twelve hours until it burnt itself out. MO-2014-008 [located at ] Courtesy: Bryant’s Maritime Blog

Danish Naval Architect Uncovers Important Clues to MOL Comfort’s Demise

Pretty much the entire world was caught by surprise when images of a huge crack in the fully laden containership MOL Comfort surfaced last summer. The ship design rules at the time should have mitigated such a situation from ever happening.

While conducting research for her PhD thesis at the Technical University of Denmark, Ingrid Marie Vincent Andersen, PhD had found clues prior to this incident…

Read full post » Courtesy

The Case of the Bosun’s Crush

From Bob Couttie and the Marine Accident Casebook comesthis podcast. A mundane but fatal maritime accident writtenup in fluent prose and well illustrated by a very skilledobserver of the foibles of maritime man. One of the Clubsor major marine insurers ought to sign Couttie up to help

them learn how to do this kind of thing.

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]>

Prompt Reporting of Casualties to Coast Guard Key to Safety:  If in doubt, report it, because fines await those who don’t!

The following blog was written by Robert Bruce, chief of the U.S. Coast Guard Hearing Office:

(ARLINGTON, Va.) — On Sept. 22, 1993, Amtrak’s Sunset Limited train derailed on the Big Bayou Canot bridge in Mobile, Ala., resulting in 47 persons killed and 103 persons injured. The derailment was caused by damage to the bridge from a barge that allided with the bridge minutes before the derailment. The operator of the towboat that was pushing the barge did not notify the Coast Guard of the allision before the derailment.

That accident, among other things, caused the Coast Guard to review and update its regulations governing the reporting of marine casualties. The reporting requirements are found at 46 C.F.R. § 4.05-1 and 46 C.F.R. § 4.05-10. They generally require that owners, agents, masters, operators or persons in charge immediately notify the Coast Guard of the marine casualties described in the regulation, and that the initial report be followed up by a written report to the Coast Guard within five days. A civil penalty of up to $35,000 may be assessed by the Coast Guard for failure to comply with the marine casualty reporting requirements.

In January, 2014, the Coast Guard requested comments on a draft Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circular that is intended to provide additional guidance for determining what is or is not a reportable marine casualty. The comment period closed in April 2014, and the Coast Guard is currently formulating its response to those comments received.

In calendar year 2012, the Hearing Office received 24 cases alleging violations of the requirements to report marine casualties. Three of those cases alleged both a failure to immediately report and failure to provide a written report of a marine casualty. One of the cases was closed administratively, five charges of failure to report were dismissed and three charges resulted in warnings. Civil penalties were assessed for the other 15 charges that were found proved. The low penalty assessed was $100 and the high penalty assessed was $15,000. The average penalty was $3,325.

In calendar year 2013, the Hearing Office received 30 cases alleging violations of the requirements to report marine casualties. Five of those cases alleged both a failure to immediately report and failure to provide a written report of a marine casualty. Three charges of failure to report were dismissed, and nine charges resulted in warnings. Civil penalties were assessed for the other 18 charges that were found proved. The low penalty assessed was $200 and the high penalty assessed was $10,000. The average penalty was $2,385.

If you experience an event or occurrence that may be a reportable marine casualty, it is prudent to contact the Coast Guard as soon as possible to determine if a report is required. The nearest Coast Guard station may be reached on VHF Channel 16, and phone numbers for Coast Guard Sector Command Centers are available online at

You cannot be assessed a civil penalty for erring on the side of reporting what may be a reportable marine casualty.  Courtesy Professional Mariner


Poem of the Month


I signed as Chief that voyage on the Sally Anne Machree,
A limpin’ lousy fuel-hog as ever put to sea.
We was two days out from Rio when the bridge begins to squeal
That the steerin’ engine’s haywire-she won’t answer to her wheel.
Well, we checks the bloomin’ engine and we finds it all O.K.
But the top and center rudder pintle’s carried clean away.
With tiger-sharks around our stern like flies in Singapore
It wasn’t healthy overside. We scratched our heads and swore.
Then I made a hook and bent it to a heavin’ line and cast
Till I caught the rudder collar where the pintle came unfast.
We lashed her up and steered her from the winches, jury-style,
Which means the rudder broke again at every blinkin’ mile.
Twelve days back to Rio…nothin’ much, as such things go,
But we didn’t sink the hooker and we didn’t take a tow.

By James A. Quinby
The Street And The Sea



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