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Load Line Survey & Its Preparation

A ship will be subject to the following surveys:
  • Initial survey before the ship is put into service
  • Renewal survey at intervals not exceeding five years
  • Annual survey within 3 months either way of the anniversary date of the load line certificate. 
 surveyor will endorse the load line certificate on satisfactory completion of the annual survey.
The period of validity of the load line certificate may be extended for a period not exceeding 3 months or the purpose of allowing the ship to complete its voyage to the port in which it is to be surveyed. 

Load Line Certification(5 years):
All ships must be issued with a load line certificate for a period specified by the administration, which shall not exceed 5 years from the date of issue. 

The form of the certificate will depend upon the Assigning Authority as follows: 
  • If the certificate is an International Load Line Certificate it shall be in the form prescribed by the 1966 Convention which is detailed in the IMO publication ‘Load Lines – 2005 Edition’. 

  • If the certificate is the United Kingdom Load Line Certificate (applicable to UK registered ships that must comply with the M. S. (Load Line) Regulations 1998) it shall be in the form prescribed in Schedule 8 of MSN 1752(M).

Preparation for Load Line Survey:
  1. A visual examination of loadline certificate and all other certificates to ensure that they are valid and properly endorsed.
  2. General inspections to ensure NO MODIFICATIONS are carried out to the conditions of assignment of freeboard.
  3. Load line marks are properly placed and painted on the port and starboard sides.
  4. Stability booklet, Loading, and ballasting information are available on board so as to carry out such operations without causing excessive stresses.
  5. Check that all access openings of enclosed structures are in good conditions. All dogs, clamps, and hinges to be free and well greased. All gaskets and watertight seals should be crack free. Ensure that the doors open from both sides.
  6. Check all cargo hatches and access to holds for weather tightness.
  7. Check the efficiency and securing of portable beams.
  8. If portable wooden hatch covers are used check that they are in good condition
  9. If tarpaulins are used at least two should be provided for each hatch and in good condition.
  10. Inspect all machinery space opening on exposed deck
  11. Check that any manholes and flush scuttles are capable of being made watertight
  12. Check that all ventilator openings are provided with an efficient weathertight closing appliance
  13. All air pipe should be provided with satisfactory means for closing and opening
  14. Inspect any cargo ports below the freeboard deck and ensure that all of them are watertight
  15. Ensure that non-return valves on overboard valves are operating in a satisfactory manner
  16. Side scuttles and openings below the freeboard deck must have efficient internal watertight deadlights. Check that all freeing ports are in satisfactory conditions
  17. All guard-rails and bulwarks should be in satisfactory condition
  18. Check that all freeing ports are in satisfactory conditions


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