Ship Inspection Programme


While the general condition and operational and maintenance standards of ships entered with the UK P&I Club are getting better, the improvements will have to continue. Club managers believe that rising insurance costs and ever more demanding legislation and regulation mean that the 'quality momentum' is not only desirable but unavoidable.

It is estimated that hull, machinery and P&I insurance for a typical Panamax vessel is now around 15% of operating costs. Given the millions of dollars paid out by the P&I clubs alone each year in respect of thousands of injury, collision, cargo, pollution and other claims, it follows that loss prevention advice needs to play a growing role in keeping incidents in check.

Recent years have seen the introduction of ISM (1998/2002), STCW 95 (1997) and MARPOL Annexe 1 Amendments (1995). At the same time, Port State Control regimes, the US Coast Guard, more demanding IACS quality systems and increased numbers of commercial inspections have added to the pressures borne by shipowners and operators.

The UK P&I Club, with around 20% of the world’s tonnage on its books, is at the forefront of providing advice and materials to prevent and curb losses and to advise on legislative and regulatory compliance. At the sharp end is the Club’s Ship Inspection Programme which involves expert examination of entered vessels at ports around the world.

The Club’s analysis of major claims of over $100,000 provides a salutary context. From 1987 to 2000, over 5,250 large claims cost the UK P&I Club $2,250 million.

Half these claims involved human error – around 20% from deck officers, 15% crew, 2% engineering officers, 5% pilots and 9% people onshore. For personal injury alone, crew error accounted for about 43% of such claims and deck officer error and equipment failure 11% each.



Staff Author