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Who is a Marine Surveyor?

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 11/04/2024
  • 2 min read

The marine industry is a multifaceted industry engaged in various activities, such as the transportation of goods and people, recreational cruises, marine energy, and more. Ships are an essential part of the marine industry, and even the slightest mistake in their building and design can result in the loss of life and property.

This is where the role of a marine surveyor in the maritime industry comes into the picture. He plays a crucial role in inspecting vessels before they are set out in the waters, and he also serves majorly in matters of marine insurance policy.

In this write-up, we will explain who a marine surveyor is, what insurance surveyor qualification is needed, the eligibility requirements to become a surveyor and more.

Who is a Marine Surveyor?

A marine surveyor is a professionally qualified individual who is responsible for surveying various marine vessels, such as ships, boats, and yachts. He conducts inspections and surveys to assess the vessel's condition and the equipment installed therein.

A surveyor is a highly qualified inspector who is also responsible for carrying out detailed evaluations of damages for marine insurance purposes. They are qualified professionals who ascertain a vessel's seaworthiness by implementing various survey methods.

The post of surveyor demands excellent technical know-how and in-depth knowledge of the vessel's hull, marine engines, electrical systems, and other related areas.

What are the Responsibilities & Duties of a Surveyor?

  • Inspecting the Vessels- The primary and most important responsibility of a marine surveyor is to inspect and assess the condition of the vessels. Only after a report from the surveyor, is it decided whether the vessel is fit to venture into the sea or not.

  • Inspection of the Cargo- Apart from inspecting the marine vessels, a surveyor also examines, inspects, and assesses the cargo or goods.

  • Maintaining a record of the Vessels—One of the surveyor's duties is to maintain all the essential records of the ship. All the necessary information regarding the interior and exterior of the vessels is stored in photos or videos.

  • Inspecting the Maintenance Records— A surveyor is also required to inspect the ship's maintenance records closely and ensure that all the rules and procedures are followed appropriately.

  • Equipment Testing- A craft surveyor also checks the functioning of the vessel mechanisms and machinery to ensure they are working without any disruption.

Types of Marine Surveyors

Since the marine industry is vast and diverse, there are various types of marine hull surveyors who have specialised roles to perform. Here are the types of surveyors and the tasks they perform:

  • Government Surveyor- He is responsible for carrying out surveys on ship registration and implementing ship safety standards.

  • Cargo Surveyor- Cargo owners appoint surveyors to inspect the cargo to ensure its quality and quantity.

  • Classification Surveyor- The classification society appoints them to ensure that a vessel's machinery and mechanisms adhere to the pre-set regulations.

  • Small Craft and Yacht Surveyor—These surveyors are responsible for inspecting smaller crafts and vessels (less than 24 metres) that are often used for pleasure sailing.

How to Become a Marine Surveyor?

  • Determine the type of surveyor you want to become

  • Gain relevant work experience in the marine industry

  • Obtain the required surveyor training.

  • Consider getting a surveyor certification. Among the conditions for insurance surveyor eligibility are that an individual must have a degree or diploma in engineering, or be a chartered accountant, or be a member of the Insurance Institute of India.

Skills Required to Be a Successful Marine Surveyor

  • Attention to minute details and organisation are the two most critical soft skills required for a marine surveyor. Apart from soft skills, one must also have strong practical skills to carry out the responsibilities successfully.

  • Decent photography skills.

  • Knowledge of different marine surveys

  • Expertise in the technical aspects of the vessel

  • Understanding of cybersecurity and its trends

  • Communications skills

  • Problem-solving ability

Marine Surveyor Salary

The role of a marine surveyor is a challenging one and requires the application of technical and soft skills. As prestigious as the post is, it comes with a lot of responsibilities as their decisions can impact the shipping industry.

Therefore, they must be compensated adequately for their skills and services. In India, the salary of a marine surveyor varies according to experience, qualification, and other factors. Besides, the marine industry has set specific standards to ensure that surveyors receive fair compensation for their work.


A marine surveyor plays a crucial role in marine insurance and the marine industry. From inspecting a ship to determine its seaworthiness to surveying losses after a mishap, the role of a craft surveyor cannot be underestimated.

Insurance providers also hire a surveyor, who acts as a link between the insured and the insurer to determine the extent of loss for claim settlement. Various types of marine policies are available for those in the marine business, depending upon their business needs. Tata AIG is a trusted name when it comes to marine insurance in India, offering cost-effective and beneficial insurance plans.

You can choose from various policies we offer, like marine open policy, marine cargo insurance, hull insurance, freight insurance, and so on. By purchasing the right marine policy, you can protect your business against losses and risks associated with maritime transport.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the different types of marine surveys?

  • The different types of marine surveys are as follows:

  • Pre-purchase surveys

  • Damage surveys

  • New Yacht surveys

  • Insurance C & V surveys

  • Appraisal surveys

What is the C & V survey in insurance?

  • The conditions and value survey is conducted when an insurance company wants to determine whether or not they should insure a particular vessel.
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Your policy is subjected to terms and conditions & inclusions and exclusions mentioned in your policy wording. Please go through the documents carefully.

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