Section 3: Survey and inspection process—initial survey—construction or alteration

Structure and documentation process to follow before, during and after conducting a survey.

This section sets out the survey process for accredited surveyors.

This section must be adhered to if you do not have your own ISO 9001 (or equivalent) Quality Management System (QMS). If you have your own QMS, you are encouraged to build the information contained within this section into your QMS.

Construction phase

At a minimum, the surveys specified in the below table should be conducted and documented, where applicable. You must retain the records of surveys including the date, person inspecting, observations and conclusions of inspections undertaken throughout the construction phase.

Survey type Required for Form to use Description of survey
Hull structure composite Vessels built from composite materials Initial survey composite construction report
  • Material certification
  • Daily laminating record
  • Thickness test
  • Ultrasonic record
  • Resin / glass content acceptance
  • Verification of vessel built in accordance with plans
Hull structure welded construction Vessels built from steel or aluminium Initial survey welded construction report
  • Material certification (including consumables)
  • Welding procedure qualification (WPQR and WPS)
  • Welder qualification
  • Presentation and fit-up of plate in accordance with WPS
  • Welding inspection records and compartment sign off sheets
  • Member alignment
  • Distortion and repairs
  • Verification of vessel built in accordance with plans
Hull structure other Vessels  
  • Adequate inspections to ensure vessels complies with standards
Engineering All vessels—as applicable Initial machinery and engineering survey report
  • Bilge systems (pipe materials, flex lengths, manifold and pump arrangements, etc)
  • Hydraulic systems
  • Steering systems (tiller arm and cross link arrangement, emergency steering)
  • Fuel systems (shutoff valving, piping, transfer pump arrangement including remote stops and pressure bypass, etc)
  • Valves (screw down valve seating, ball valve operation, valve materials, etc)
  • Discharges (height and material)
  • Exhaust system (height above dwl, valving, lagging, riser, water injection, etc)
Fuel tank For each vessel fuel tank Fuel tank inspection report
  • Internal inspection (material of tank, required thickness, baffle spacing, check drain, check filler location, check inspection opening, check sounding arrangement
  • Pressure test (confirm testing pressure, confirm no leaks)
Shaft For each vessel shaft Shaft survey report
  • Verification of shaft material
  • Inspection of propeller taper, coupling taper, gland packing area, key and keyway
  • Measurement of  shaft and verification of straightness
  • Inspection of propeller
  • Witness of bluing
Fire systems and fitout material All vessels—as applicable Initial survey fire safety report
  • Galley fire systems
  • Structural fire protection arrangement and installation
  • Bulkhead penetrations
  • Fire detection system (specification and installation)
  • Fixed fire extinguishing system (specification and installation)
  • Stairways and doorways arrangement and operation
  • Verification of sound insulation, thermal insulation, linings and ceilings, furniture, draperies and curtains, bedding and deck finish materials
Draft marks Vessels with draft marks Draft marks report—under development
  • Determination of a baseline
  • Record of the height of marks above and below baseline
  • Calculation of draft mark height (vessel relative) and computation of error (if any)
Watertight integrity All vessels Initial watertight and weathertight integrity survey report for non-load line vessels
  • Verification of vent and air pipe heights
  • Tests of closing devices
  • Verification of sill heights
  • Checks of hatches / coverings
  • Check / test of doors
  • Verification of freeing port area
Load line Vessels of load line length Load line conditions of assignment report
  • Verification of vent and air pipe heights
  • Tests of closing devices
  • Verification of sill heights
  • Checks of hatches / coverings
  • Check / test of doors
  • Verification of freeing port area
  • Verification of load line placement
  • Certificate of compliance for gas installation
Electrical All vessels—as applicable Electrical survey report
  • Generator tests (governor operation, parallel operations, load sharing, voltage regulation)
  • Load testing of motors
  • Testing of overload alarm circuits
  • Testing of main engine safety alarms and trips
  • Testing of remote controls, stops and limit switches
  • Testing of emergency stop circuits
  • Testing of vessels alarm systems
  • Testing of any other systems and equipment installed on vessel
  • Verification of electrical installation in accordance with AS3000

Conducting the survey

Where conducting the above survey, you are expected to:

Before conducting survey:

  • review approved drawings and associated documentation
  • commence survey record / file applicable to the size and type of vessel
  • confirm all required documentation is to hand
  • collect appropriate survey equipment for type of survey being conducted
  • collect PPE
  • consider WHS issues that may arise for type of survey and vessel being surveyed (eg confined spaces, slips trip and falls etc)
  • ensure surveyor ID card is carried.

On arrival at site:

  • conduct visual site inspection prior to undertaking survey, observe appropriate practices and PPE and collect selected tools
  • identify and greet client—issue warning to all persons at the worksite that you will be on site and for persons to be cautious
  • identify and photograph vessel
  • conduct WHS briefing with client
  • undertake risk assessment—identify, evaluate and mitigate risks.

Conduct survey:

  • constantly monitor the workplace and reassess as circumstances change
  • conduct construction stage survey inspection using the appropriate form
  • document and create photographic evidence where appropriate
  • review previous issues / observations raised from past stage inspections to determine if any outstanding issues are to be re-addressed
  • if issues are existing, review and close out if appropriate
  • assist client in addressing any issues raised during the survey inspection
  • arrange any subsequent visits that may need to be conducted to review any rectifications.

After survey complete:

  • update your vessel files and survey record
  • maintain all photographic evidence with the vessel file.

Where any deficiencies or deviations from original approved plans are identified, they should be referred back to the accredited surveyor who approved the plans, who should review the deficiencies and deviations that have been identified and determine how or if any changes to either the plans or vessel are required.

The commissioning phase

The commissioning phase is a series of tests and trials that are intended to verify a vessel’s systems as operational and functional, establish any operational limits required, provide safety information to the master and to verify any assumptions made during the design and construction phases of survey (eg displacement, operational speed). Commissioning phase surveys may include, but are not limited to, sea trials, machinery trials, stability tests, essential systems trials, safety equipment and safety information checks.

A commissioning phase survey will generally include:

  • survey of equipment
  • a record of commissioning trials such as those described in conducting sea trials instruction to surveyors
  • a stability assessment made in accordance with applicable standards and a record of the stability approval.

The results of an inclining experiment should be recorded on the inclining experiment report. Lightship measurement should be recorded on the vessel lightship report. Stability book or stability compliance report approvals are to include all relevant assumptions or conditions of the approval.

You must retain a copy of the approved stability. A copy should be supplied to the vessel owner for carriage on board the vessel and a further copy provided in support of your recommendation.

Last updated: 16 November 2017
Last reviewed: 16 November 2017