Certification and documentation

Does the operator's representative visit the vessel at least bi-annually?

Is a recent operator's audit report available and is a close-out system in place for dealing with non-conformities?

Does the Master review the safety management system and report to the operator on any deficiencies?

Is the vessel free of conditions of class or significant recommendations, visas, memoranda or notations?

Are both crew and contractors required to comply with the vessel's safety management systems in full?

Crew and Contractor Management

Is there a process in place to ensure that any proposed bridging documents integrate effectively with the vessel's safety management system?

Drug and alcohol testing; is there a 'for cause' and 'post incident testing requirement?

Record the frequency of unannounced testing for alcohol and drugs; state date of last test

Crew and Contractor Management

Are the marine crew members appropriately qualified for the operations onboard?

Is there a competence assessment process for the marine crew onboard?

Does the company operate a formal appraisal system for marine crew?

Is HSSE awareness one of the appraised behaviours?

Is there evidence to confirm that the Master does not sign on incorrectly certificated crew members or those without their original certificates, nor release incumbents?

Are provisions made to provide the vessel's to provide the vessel's crew with medical and first aid training and facilities?

Are GMDSS requirements met with regard to qualified radio operator personnel, watch keeping and designation for distress communications?

Do all personnel maintain hours of rest records and are the hours of rest in compliance with STCW requirements?

Have all deck officers attended bridge recourse management courses?

Have the Master and/or any officers with direct responsibility for ship handling received appropriate formal training in ship handling for the type of vessel?

If the master has been newly-hired within the last 12 months, did he receive appropriate pre-command training, including documented understanding of the company's expectations?

Have all deck officers received formal documented training on the navigational equipment fitted onboard?

Does the company have a documented disciplinary process which facilitates removal of personnel if deemed a risk?

Does the company have a medical policy in place?

Does the company promote high standards of housekeeping and hygiene awareness, particularly in food handling and storage?

Crew and Contractor Management
Contractor specific

Is there evidence of training contractors in the contents of the vessel's safety management system?

Is there evidence of contractors being familiarised with the vessels emergency procedures and requirements?

Are contractors encouraged to be involved in the vessels safety management processes, such as safety meetings?

Are the contractors appropriately qualified for their operations and the equipment placed onboard the vessel?

Are procedures in place to verify the adequacy of contractors equipment before first use?

Have any additional hazards associated with contractor's operations and equipment been identified and risk assessed and appropriate control measures put in place?

Are all contractors aware that they must comply with shipboard accident/incident reporting and investigation process?

Do contractors supply appropriate PPE?


Is the vessel provided with comprehensive operator's navigation instructions and procedures?

Do the vessel operating procedures require a minimum of two crew members, one being the master or a suitably qualified and experienced officer, to be on the bridge throughout operations alongside an installation?

Is there a documented procedure in place for entry in into the 500m safety zone?

Are checklists, such as those for pre-arrival, pre-departure, 500m zone, watch handover and pilot-master interchange being completed?

Do the vessel procedures clearly identify the actions to be followed when changing the manoeuvring position on the bridge, taking into account the physical location of the vessel in relation to the platform and/or the engine/generator status?

Does the operator provide guidance on minimum under keel clearance and squat?

Are deck log books and engine movement (bell) books correctly maintained and is an adequate record being kept of all navigational activities?

Are records being maintained of fire rounds being completed after each watch?

Are the vessel manoeuvring characteristics displayed on the bridge?

Are auto to manual steering changeover procedures clearly identified?

Do vessels officers demonstrate a full understanding of changeover practices?

Has the master written their own standing orders and are night orders being completed?

Have the deck officers countersigned the masters standing and night orders as being read and understood?

Is there a procedure for checking and recording heading reference system errors?

Has a system been established to ensure that nautical publications and charts, paper and/or electronic, for the intended voyage are onboard, current and corrected up-to-date?

Is a lookout maintained at all times when the vessel is at sea?

Was a comprehensive passage plan available for the previous voyage and did it cover the full voyage berth to berth utilising appropriate charts and publications?

Is the echo sounder recorder marked with reference date and time on each occasion it was switched on?

Are the factors necessary to identify a safe waiting position defined in the vessels operating system?

Do the procedures clearly prohibit the use do offshore installations as waypoints?

During pilotage, was the position of the vessel adequately monitored?

Is there an adequate system for dealing with navigational warnings and are they being charted?

Is all navigation equipment in good working order?

Are navigational lights in good order?

Safety and Security Management

Are all crew members aware of the identity and contact details of the Designated Person Ashore (DPA) or appropriate shore based contact?

Has a vessel safety officer been designated and trained to undertake this role?

Are the vessels officers familiar with the operation of fire fighting, life saving and other emergency equipment?

Is personal protective equipment provided as required?

Are the PPE requirements for tasks clearly defined?

Are personnel using PPE as required?

Are regular safety meetings held, are the minutes recorded and does the operator provide management responses?

Does the vessel have documented procedures for man overboard scenarios?

Is there a procedure for the reporting, investigation, and close-outs of accidents, incidents, non-conformities and near misses?

Are smoking restrictions in place and are they being adhered to?

Is there an effective inspection and testing programme in place to ensure that all portable electrical equipment used onboard is maintained in a satisfactory condition?

Is all loose gear on deck, in stores and internal spaces properly secured?

Does the safety management system address the control of hazardous substances onboard the vessel?

Safety and Security Management

Is the hospital clean and tidy and ready for immediate use?

Is an alarm system fitted in the hospital and is it regularly tested?

Is an officer designated as the dedicated officer to provide medical care onboard?

Is there a system for verifying and checking medical stores?

Are first aid kits readily available and subjected to regular inspection to confirm their contents?

Is cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) equipment, including oxygen resuscitators and defibrillators is carried, is in good condition and regularly tested?

Are tests undertaken of the potable water system and is regular maintenance carried out and recorded?

Are personnel trained in the proper use of CPR equipment?

Safety and Security Management
Management of Change

Is there a documented procedure in place for the management of change?

Is there evidence to demonstrate that the MOC process is being properly applied?

If any equipment required by operations is retro-fitted or temporarily installed, is there a formal process for accessing the integrity of connections to the vessel systems?

Safety and Security Management
Drills, Training and Familiarisation

Is there a procedure for the safety induction of new personnel, including contractors?

Are emergency drills being carried out regularly?

Is regular training in the use of life saving equipment being undertaken and are appropriate records maintained for each person onboard?

Are "grab bags" available in cabins?

Are pollution clean-up drills held in line with the vessel SOPEP or SMPEP requirements and are there records?

Safety and Security Management
Ship Security

If the vessel is required to have an approved Ship Security Plan (SSP), does it meet ISPS requirements?

If the vessel has an approved SSP, has a ship security officer been designated?

Is an adequate deck watch being maintained to prevent unauthorised access?

Safety and Security Management
Control of Work

Does the vessel operate a documented permit to work (PTW) system?

Does the PTW system specify roles and responsibilities?

Is there a register recording permits issued and isolations preformed?

Does the PTW system specify when shore management approval is required prior to work being carried out?

Are the period of validity and requirements for re-validation specified on the permit?

Do personnel receive formal training in the use of the PTW system?

Does the PTW system include an audit process?

Does the PTW or the SMS include a "stop the job" policy or statement?

Does the PTW system include an effective isolation (Lock out / Tag out) process?

Are effective procedures in place to ensure safe work on high voltage systems and do they address appropriate access arrangements?

If the vessel has high voltage equipment, are staff suitably trained and been deemed competent to preform maintenance on it?

Are there specific procedures in place for any hot work onboard?

Are users of welding equipment specifically trained and qualified?

If electronic welding equipment is provided, is it in good order, inspected regularly and are written safety guidelines available?

If gas welding and burning equipment is provided, is it inspected regularly and in good order?

Are spare oxygen and acetylene cylinders stored apart in a dedicated storage apart in a dedicated storage and is the storage in a clearly marked, well ventilated position outside the accommodation and machinery spaces?

Are there procedures in place covering the use of portable electrical equipment on deck?

Are all spaces that are classed as 'enclosed spaces' identified and clearly marked?

Are there specific procedures in place for enclosed space entry?

Are portable gas and oxygen analysers provided appropriate to the vessel's operation and are they calibrated and in good condition?

Are personnel onboard trained and competent in the use and calibration of portable oxygen and gas analysers?

Are there specific procedures covering working at height or overside work?

Safety and Security Management
Lifting Equipment

Are up to date records maintained for the regular inspection maintenance and testing of all lifting equipment?

Is an inspection and maintenance programme in place for other lifting equipment such as wire or webbing slings, shackles, eye bolts etc?

Are test certificates available onboard for all items of loose lifting equipment including wire or webbing slings, shackles, eye bolts etc?

Are safety devices associated with lifting appliances fully operational?

Are cranes, derricks, pad eyes and other securing points clearly marked with their SWL?

Are all items of lifting gear marked with an unique identification?

Is a colour coding or alternative system in use to identify inspected lifting equipment?

Is there a programme for routine testing, I.e. start up, daily, weekly and monthly checks of lifting equipment?

Is there a procedure requiring that all lifting operations are properly planned?

Does the vessel have a system in place for the quarantine of damaged or uncertified lifting equipment?

Is the vessel equipped with service cranes covering all anticipated operations?

Are any personnel elevators (lifts) onboard the vessel included in the vessel PMS?

Safety and Security Management
Life Saving Appliances

Are vessel specific life saving equipment training manuals available?

Are vessel specific life saving equipment maintenance instructions available and are weekly or monthly inspections being carried out?

Are muster lists displayed onboard?

Are liferaft operating instructions displayed?

If vessel has a rescue boat, is the rescue boat, including its equipment and launching arrangement, in good order?

Where the vessel is equipped with a fast rescue boat (FRC) is the equipment in good order and regularly maintained?

Are liferafts in good order?

Are hydrostatic releases, where fitted, correctly attached and in good order?

Are survival craft portable VHFs and Search and Rescue Transponders (SARTs) in good order and charged?

Are lifebuoys, lights, buoyant lines, quick release mechanisms and self activating smoke floats in good order?

Are lifejackets in good order?

Are lifejacket donning instructions displayed?

Are immersion suits in a satisfactory condition?

Are pyrotechnics, including line throwing apparatus, in date and in good order?

Are the locations of life saving apparatus marked with IMO symbols?

Safety and Security Management

Is vessel specific fire fighting manuals available?

Are vessel specific fire safety operational booklets available?

Is vessel specific fire fighting equipment maintenance instructions available and are weekly and monthly inspections being carried out?

Are records available to show that samples of the foam compound have been tested and regular intervals?

Is a fire plan exhibited within the accommodation, is a copy available externally and is equipment correctly marked on it?

Are fire mains, pumps, hoses and nozzles in good order and available for immediate use?

Is the international shore connection readily available externally and is the location clearly marked?

Are fixed fire detection and alarm systems, if fitted, in good working order?

Are fixed fire extinguishing systems, where fitted, in good working order and clear operating instructions posted?

Is the emergency fire pump in full operational condition and are starting instructions clearly displayed?

Are portable fire extinguishers in good order with operating instructions clearly marked?

Are firemen's outfits and breathing apparatus in good order, provided with fully charged cylinders and ready for immediate use?

If fitted, are emergency escape breathing devices (EEBDs) in good order and ready for immediate use?

Are accommodation and ventilation fan emergency stops in good order and clearly marked to indicate the spaces they serve?

Are fire flaps in good order and clearly marked to indicate the spaces they serve?

If vessel has FiFi notation, is the associated equipment in good order?

Safety and Security Management

Is a safe means of access provided, including, where appropriate, the provision of a gangway, accommodation ladder, pilot ladder, safety net, lifebuoy and line?

Pollution Prevention and Environmental Management
Pollution Prevention

Is the Engine Room oil record book correctly completed?

Do the sludge and bilge tanks designated in form A of the IOPP Certificate and those listed in the Oil Record Book agree?

Is the oil record book free from any pollution incidents or violations?

If the disposal of engine room oily water or sludge to a shore facility has taken place, has the event been recorded in the oil record book, did the vessel receive a statement or certificate of disposal from the shore facility?

Are thruster seals free from hydraulic leaks?

Are there adequate containment arrangements fitted around hydraulic machinery in case of leaks?

Is there evidence that the oily water separator control system and engine room bilge oily water separator/filtering system is maintained in good working order?

Are specific warning notices posted to safeguard against the accidental opening of the overboard discharge valve from the oily water separator?

Pollution Prevention and Environmental Management
Shipboard Oil and Marine Pollution Emergency Plans

Is an approved MARPOL shipboard oil pollution emergency plan (SOPEP) provided?

Is the IMO Coastal contact list up to date and is the master aware of port contact procedures?

Is there evidence that the vessel has carried out regular drills and that the contents of the SOPEP manual have been reviewed?

Pollution Prevention and Environmental Management
Bulk liquid transfers

Is there evidence of a pre-transfer conference being held between the vessel and the receiving facility before the transfer of bulk liquids begins?

Are spill containment arrangements provided in the way of bulk transfer manifolds?

Are manifold spill containers if provided, empty and are the drainage arrangements satisfactory?

If carried, are the hoses and connections used for the transfer of bulk liquids free of defects?

If carried, are all transfer hoses routinely tested?

Pollution Prevention and Environmental Management
Ballast Water Management

Does the vessel have an approved ballast water and sediments management plan?

Are records maintained of all ballast water exchanges?

Pollution Prevention and Environmental Management
Waste Management

Does the vessel have a garbage management plan and has garbage been handled and disposed of in accordance with MARPOL?

Has the garbage record book been correctly completed?

Does the garbage management plan include procedures for collecting, storing, processing and disposing of garbage?

Are controls in place to ensure that sewage treatment plant discharges comply with MARPOL or local requirements?

Structural Condition

Is the hull free from visible structural defects that warrant further investigation?

Are weather decks free from visible structural defects that warrant further investigation?

Where deck sheathing exists are records available regarding the removal of sheathing and checking deck and sheathing conditions?

Is the superstructure free from visible defects that warrant further investigation?

Are internal spaces free from visible structural defects that warrant further investigation?

If there has been any significant structural damage to the vessel, have repairs been undertaken to the satisfaction of an attending Class surveyor?

If the vessel has any through-hull penetrations, are they in good order and subjected to class approval?

Structural Condition

Is there a competent person responsible for cargo and ballast operations?

Are adequate stability records maintained?

Is an approved stability book available onboard that includes both intact and damage stability scenarios?

Is a Class/Flag approved stability loading computer / software package in use?

Are there records indicating that the operational accuracy of the load computer is tested regularly?

Is the vessel free of any inherent intact stability problems?

Is there a system of verifying and recording the calibration of tank gauging systems and level alarms?

Do procedures require checking of differences between actual and calculated displacements and are records maintained?

Is the vessels stability calculated on a regular basis?

Are chain lockers, or other spaces at risk of flooding fitted with flood detection and permanently installed means to pump out?

Structural Condition
Structural Modifications

Has the vessel's Classification society been involved in assessing / approving any structural modifications to the vessel?

Is there evidence that the vessel's stability information has been updated when structural or plant modifications have taken place?

If applicable, is the vessel Master and officers fully aware of the changes to stability information as a result of the structural or plant modifications?

If structural modifications have been undertaken, do they agree with the details in the OVPQ?


Are certificates available for all mooring ropes, wires, chains, shackles etc?

Are there records of the inspection and maintenance of mooring ropes, wires and equipment?

Are there sufficient competent marine crew to conduct safe mooring operations?

Is the provision of primary and back up communication equipment satisfactory?

Mooring Procedures

Are moorings satisfactorily deployed and tended, taking into account anticipated procedures?

Are mooring ropes secured to the bitts and turned up correctly?

Are all powered mooring lines correctly reeled on drums?

Are all powered mooring lines secured on brakes and are the winches out of gear?

Are all mooring lines stowed neatly to minimise tripping hazards and are mooring areas clear and unobstructed?

Are there sufficient mooring fittings available to enable deployment of fenders, if necessary?

Are all mooring winches in good order?

Are all mooring ropes and wires in good order?

Are pedestal fairleads, roller fairleads and other rollers well greased and free to turn and are bitts and chocks free of grooving?

Are sufficient closed fairleads available for 'ship-ship' mooring?

Are appropriate stoppers available and in good condition?

Is information available verifying the SWL of all mooring fittings?

Anchoring Equipment

Are windlasses, anchors, locking bars and cables in a satisfactory condition and operating effectively?

If fitted, are chain locker doors securely battened down?

If fitted, are spurling pipes normally secured to prevent water ingress?


Are instructions for operating the digital selective calling (DSC) and satellite communications equipment in an emergency clearly displayed?

Are the vessel call sign and immarsat station identity clearly marked on the radio installation?

Can officers demonstrate a santas factory understanding of how to operate communications equipment in an emergency?

Is a continuous listening watch maintained on VHF channel 16?

Are officers aware of the requirements for position updating on two-way communications equipment?

Has the AIS been programmed with up-to-date voyage information?

Are officers aware of the function of the ship security alert system?

Has a qualified person been designated to handle distress communications?

Are periodical tests of communications equipment carried out and recorded as required?

Is the radio log being maintained correctly?

If applicable, are radio emergency batteries in a satisfactory fully charged condition and the battery log completed and up to date?

Are arrangements in place to ensure the availability of the radio equipment


Is the communications equipment in good order?

Is the satellite EPIRB fitted, armed and labeled correctly and inspected in accordance with the manufacturers requirements?

Is the vessel equipped with sufficient portable radios for use on deck?

Is there a copy of the GMDSS operators handbook onboard?

Are there procedures for the use of communications equipment within the 500 m/ safety zones?

Propulsion, Power Generation and Machinery
Policies, Procedures and Documentation

Is the vessel provided with adequate operators instructions and procedures?

Are the duties of the watch-standing officers and ratings clearly defined?

Is the engineroom log book fully maintained in ink, both at sea and in port?

If the machinery space is being operated manned, are there sufficient engineers onboard?

Has the chief engineer written his own standing orders and are night orders being completed?

Have the watch engineers countersigned the chief engineer's standing and night orders as read and understood?

Are there adequate procedures to prevent uncontrolled entry into the engine room?

Are there procedures to restart critical equipment?

Are engineers familiar with restart procedures and are records available of exercises and drills?

Does the operator subscribe to a fuel oil testing programme?

Does the operator subscribe to a lubricating oil testing programme?

Does the operator subscribe to a hydraulic oil testing programme?

Are detailed bunker transfer instructions available?

If the machinery space is certified for unmanned operation, is it operated in that mode?

In the case of UMS vessels, are machinery alarms and engineers alarm systems tested regularly with results recorded?

Is the dead man alarm system, where fitted, in good order and used as required?

Propulsion, Power Generation and Machinery
Planned Maintenance

Is a planned maintenance system in place, being followed and is it up to date?

Are items of critical equipment identified in the planned maintenance system?

Is a comprehensive and up to date inventory of spare parts being maintained?

Propulsion, Power Generation and Machinery
Safety Management

Is an engineers call alarm fitted and is it in good working order and is it tested regularly and the results recorded?

Are emergency escape routes clearly marked, unobstructed and adequately lit?

Is the level of lighting in all areas of the machinery spaces satisfactory?

Are vessels engine exhausts fitted with spark arresters for safe operation alongside installations / other vessels?

Do records indicate the regular testing of emergency equipment?

Are machinery emergency stops and shut offs clearly marked and do records indicate that they have been regularly tested?

Are Diesel engine high and low pressure fuel delivery pipes adequately jacketed or screened?

Are Diesel engine exhausts and other hot surfaces in the vicinity of fuel, diesel, lubricating and hydraulic oil pipes protected against spray?

Are hot surfaces, particularly Diesel engines, free of any evidence of fuel, diesel and lubricating oil?

Are fuel and lubricating oil handling areas, including purifier rooms, if applicable, ventilated and clean?

Are main engine bearing temperature monitors, or the crankcase oil mist detector, in good order?

Where hydraulic aggregate pumps are located within the main engine compartment, is an oil mist detector fitted?

Are the main switchboard, alternators and other electrical equipment satisfactorily protected from water spray?

Is deck isolation provided to the front and rear of medium power (i.e. 220v to 1000v) electrical switchboards and is it in a satisfactory condition?

Are gauge glass closing devices on oil tanks of a self closing, fail safe type and not inhibited?

Are self closing sounding devices to double bottom tanks in good order, closed and capped?

Are all items of moving machinery which present a hazard provided with adequate guards?

Are workshop machine tools in a safe condition and is adequate eye protection available?

Is all loose gear in the machinery spaces, stores and steering compartment properly secured?

Are chemicals properly stowed and are material data sheets available?

Are machinery spaces and steering compartments clean and free from obvious leaks and is the overall standard of housekeeping and fabric maintenance satisfactory?

Are bilge systems operational and bilge free of oil, rubbish and sediments?

Are bilge high level alarm systems regularly tested and are records maintained?

Are seawater pumps, sea chests and associated pipework in a satisfactory condition and free of hard rust and temporary repairs, particularly outboard of the ship-side valves?

Are valves and pipework marked or colour coded?

Propulsion, power generation and machinery
Machinery Status

Are all items of main, auxiliary and emergency plant in good order and reported to be fully operational?

Is the engine side manoeuvring station in good order and are engineers familiar with the procedure for taking control in an emergency?

Are concise starting instructions for the emergency generator, where fitted, clearly displayed?

Where applicable, is the emergency generator fuel tank provided with sufficient fuel?

Where an emergency generator is not fitted, is the engine room emergency batteries in good order and fully charged?

Is all electrical equipment including junction boxes and cable runs in good order?

Are switch boards free from significant earth faults?

Are emergency electrical power supplies fully operational?

General Appearance and Condition
Hull, Superstructure and External Weather Decks

Is the general condition, visual appearance and cleanliness of the hull satisfactory?

Are the hull markings clearly indicated and correctly placed?

Is the general condition, visual appearance and cleanliness of external decks satisfactory including non slip surfaces in the working areas and access routes?

Does the structure include arrangements designed to minimise hazards associated with falls from height?

Is the general condition of service pipework satisfactory and is it free from significant corrosion and pitting and soft patches or other temporary repairs?

Are all deck openings, including water tight doors and portholes, in a satisfactory condition and capable of being properly secured?

Are there documented procedures for the operation of powered watertight doors which require doors to be left in the normally closed positions?

Are all watertight doors included in the planned maintenance system?

Are all watertight door position indicators operating correctly?

Are all cable transits and bulkhead penetrations correctly assembled?

Is a programme in place that covers the periodic inspection of all tanks, void spaces, chain lockers and cofferdams, and their coatings?

Are fuel, ballast and other space vents and air pipes in a satisfactory condition, marked to indicate the spaces they serve and does visual evidence indicate regular maintenance?

Is the general condition, visual appearance and cleanliness of the superstructure satisfactory?

General Appearance and Condition

Is deck lighting adequate?

Is the general condition of the electrical equipment, including light fittings, conduits and wiring, satisfactory?

General Condition and Appearance
Internal Spaces

Are internal spaces and store rooms clean and tidy?

Are the forecastle space, rope stores and after stores free from water?

General Condition and Appearance
Accommodation Areas

Is the accommodation clean and tidy?

Are alleyways free of obstructions and exits clearly marked?

Are public spaces, including smoke rooms, mess rooms, sanitary areas, food storerooms, food handling spaces, refrigerated spaces, galleys and pantry areas clean, tidy and in a hygienically satisfactory condition?

Are laundries and drying rooms free from accumulations of flammable materials that could constitute a fire hazard?

Is the level of accommodation lighting satisfactory?

Is the condition of the electrical equipment in the accommodation satisfactory?

Are personnel alarms in refrigerated spaces in good order and regularly tested?

Please note that this checklist is a hypothetical example and provides basic information only. It is not intended to take the place of, among other things, workplace, health and safety advice; medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment; or other applicable laws. You should also seek your own professional advice to determine if the use of such checklist is permissible in your workplace or jurisdiction.