stressfreeInspections such as by Port State, Flag, Class and Oil Majors are now a fact of shipping. There is no doubt that these inspections have helped improve safety standards in shipping; the number of sub-standard ships has reduced and it is now difficult for rogue operators to endanger life at sea or damage the environment.

 

 

Every action has its side effects; inspections are carried out on all ships and are stressful times for a ship. Such inspections can determine the commercial success of a ship, the results are one of the Key Performance Indicators of the ship and of the Company and the ultimate aim is to clear each and every inspection with a clean record. Detentions or deficiencies, on the other hand, can lead to loss of time, reputation and ultimately earnings.

Having been part of several inspections, both on the ship, and as part of the office support team, I am of the opinion that such inspections are all about preparation and presentation. With a few key strategies, it is indeed possible to be prepared for an inspection any day, achieve success every time, and still be stress free and have a smile on your face. I share some of these strategies below:

ADOPT POSITIVE MIND-SETS:

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SOLID PREPARATION WILL GIVE SOLID RESULTS

“Fortune favours the prepared mind”

STEP 1: DOCUMENTATION
If you don’t get this right, it is very difficult to catch up later.

See these links for good checklists:

STEP 2: ACTUAL CHECKS
Before the inspection, imagine you are the inspector, and carry out an inspection yourself with the help of the checklists. If you have a doubt how the item should be presented, check the Manual. Some common detainable deficiencies during port state inspections are:

Safety Items

MARPOL items

Load-line Items

ENGINE ROOM EQUIPMENT

NAVIGATIONAL EQUIPMENT

HOUSEKEEPING, CLEANLINESS AND GENERAL IMPRESSION

STEP 3: GET YOUR TEAM INVOLVED

STEP 4: DO NOT SEND OUT PSC INVITATIONS!

Many times PSC inspections are precipitated due to an event on the ship, mainly:

If you have prepared well, you CAN tackle the inspection confidently! You have prepared well but the final presentation counts! It is like putting on your best for a guest!

PRESENTATION

“Our work is the presentation of our capabilities” Edward Gibbon. If you have prepared well, show off your ship with pride and professionalism. Ultimately, it boils down to the perception of the ship YOU want the inspector to get. If you do not manage the perception, he may get the perception HE wants, and that may not always be to your favour.

STEP 5: START OFF WITH A GOOD IMPRESSION

Well begun is half- done

STEP 6: INTERACT POSITIVELY WITH THE INSPECTOR

Common failures during drills with PSC:

STEP 7: AFTER THE INSPECTION:

I got great results with these strategies. It can be done, and you can do it too!