Boat Safety Scheme Examiner FAQs

Do I have to wait until my certificate runs out before I renew it?

No a new safety certificate can be issued and dated up to 2 months before the date of renewal.

The Marina Manager where my boat is kept has told me I have to use his Boat Safety Scheme examiner, why?

Marinas can restrict access to their property to BSS examiners and other tradesmen. Sometimes the Marina may simply have a relationship or deal with an examiner that benefits both financially. Maritime Survey have no set deals with Marinas and are happy to operate wherever your boat is kept.

What common issues could I try and deal with before the examination?

Gas, ventilation and electricity are the three main areas that would usually cause a boat to fail a safety examination. Before a visit from an examiner make sure that your gas bottles are working and that the flexible piping is in date. Installation of appliances that use gas should always be professionally installed as this way they will usually pass our Boat Safety Scheme checks. In terms of electricity, poorly wired and routed cabling will be flagged by the examiner for rectification.

Is running the engine part of the Boat Safety Scheme examination process?

Quite simply no, you don’t have to run the engine as part of the examination, but it will be beneficial.

Is the BSS an online document? And will I get a hard copy issued on the day?

The certificate itself is like a car’s tax disc it will be issued online. However we do provide you with a PDF of the certificate that you can print for your records.

Do I need a certificate if my boat is less than 4 years old?

No, you’re covered until the manufacturers Declaration of Conformity runs out after 4 years of owning a new boat. As soon as the boat is above this age you should then contact an examiner to get a Boat Safety Scheme certificate.

My fire extinguishers seem alright but don’t have the labels specified in the Boat Safety Scheme Essential Guide. Why can’t I use them?

Generally, only fire extinguishers that have the correct marking are allowed on boats. These have been tested & approved for use by official testing organisations under strict operational conditions. Please be aware that some fire extinguishers will claim to be EN3 rated but will not have the accreditation of the BSS approved testing laboratories listed. These are not acceptable for use on boats licensed under the BSS.

If my boat fails the exam, what happens?

There’s no need to panic, the Maritime Survey examiner will outline why the boat has failed and give you guidance on these issues. It would be best to then follow the BSS guidelines to carry out any work to correct the faults that have been highlighted. After the work is done you can then arrange a re-examination.

The boat passed last time but failed this time, why?

The Boat Safety Scheme (BSS) is a scheme that is always reviewing and improving the safety standards on boats. Some rules may have been updated and your boat will need to accommodate these changes when your boat is re-examined. Or alternatively 4 years down the line some parts of the boat may now be in a condition where they are unfit for use and need replacing.

If I get a ‘Warning Notice’ and it’s reported to my Navigation Authority what does that mean I have to do?

If you are given a warning it’s usually because you have a safety issue (whether it is gas, electrical or ventilation related) that needs urgent attention. The Navigation authority will be notified as a precaution to make sure you carry out the work as it’s commonly given to help avoid a fatal outcome.