The purpose of this article series are guidance describing the general instructions for classification surveys during construction relating to hull construction and does not include those survey items concerning SOLAS Convention matters such as life saving, fire-fighting, etc.

In general of view, i’m giving you the first glance for scopes of a surveyor:

Responsibility for Quality Assurance

“ The workmanship is to be of the best quality. During construction, the builder is to supervise and inspect in detail every job performed in shed (workshop) and yard (field) as well. ”

This means that the first responsibility for quality assurance of a new shipbuilding lies with the shipyard and the survey conducted by the classification society, acting as a third party, is to confirm that the ship is built in accordance with the recognized Rules of the society. One of the most important items for surveyors is to fully understand the shipyard’s quality control system and to confirm its application during construction work.

Witness Inspections

The basic requirements for witness inspections are “ When each block is assembled. ” or “ When sea trials are carried out. ” etc. wherein it is specifically stated in Approved ITP. 

Since the standard items of inspection required and frequency of witness inspection have been determined in consideration of the workmanship, technical levels and quality control systems of those shipyards proved to be generally satisfactory, the inspection items and frequency of inspection for shipyard with poor quality control practices are to be properly adjusted by the surveyor. Additionally, the surveyor should always advise such shipyards to improve their quality of manufacturing.

Direct and Indirect Inspections

The classification survey is to reach its technical judgments based on the results of the surveyor’s own inspections and also on the results of indirect inspections to examine the shipyard’s inspection records.


For this reason, it is necessary to develop a good working relationship with the people in charge at the shipyard.


There are a great many items such as tightness tests, operation tests, measurement inspections etc, to be covered, demanding that the checklist of survey items which is used be as extensive as possible. When a request is made to the shipyard to make an indirect inspection, detailed instructions should be given for all items in the investigation, and the results given in the report should all be recorded in the checklist accordingly.

Standards in Shipyards

Almost all shipyards prepare their own design standards, fabrication standards, procedure standards for the disposition of errors in fabrication and the like, and shipyard operations are carried out in accordance with the requirements of these standards. The surveyor should pay due regard to these technical standards, but should also note that any item unacceptable to the Classification Society is to be requested for due modification or amendment.

Accuracy Limits

The permissible limits of accuracy for structural components given in this guidance are from the Japanese Shipbuilding Quality Standards (JSQS) and represent the values to be referred to as a guidance, not as compulsory limits. This makes the assumption that the actual value would rarely be over the limits, and hence they should not be regarded as the reference values commonly acceptable to such an extent.

The surveyor should therefore deal with these limits of accuracy in a flexible manner taking the shipyard’s standards, the size of the vessel and the importance of structural components concerned into consideration.


It is very important for the surveyor to become familiar with the process of reviewing the construction and out-fitting drawings. Whenever he has doubts about the approved drawings returned from Head Office of the Society, an immediate inquiry should be directed to the Head Office for solution.


Relationship with Superintendents

Efforts should be made by the surveyor to develop and maintain a good working  relationship with the superintendents representing the shipowners.

Survey and PandI.jpg


The good surveyor should have the properly trained knowledge about technical, working procedure and solving the problems with positive mind. Also, co-ordinate between Yard and Client to make an opening relationship to achieve the final goal of new-building project that the ship can be delivered with satisfying compliance.

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