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Damage Surveys 

Boats get damaged.  That’s why you should have insurance.  Surveyors are typically hired by the insurance company to investigate claims made by their insureds or by claimants.  Sometimes a surveyor is hired by a boat owner to investigate unusual deterioration or damage, especially on newer boats.  Some of the typical types of damage investigations include: 

  • Sinking

  • Collision

  • Groundings

  • Striking submerged objects

  • Mechanical problems (caused by external source)

  • Accidents involving boats on trailers

  • Leaking fuel tanks

  • Fire/Arson

  • Pollution mitigation

  • Severe weather


A damage survey report typically includes: 

  • Reported circumstances of the problem or loss, including statements from owners, operators and witnesses

  • Identification of the vessel(s) and description of its overall condition

  • Description of damages associated with the loss

  • Opinion as to the cause of loss

  • Review of repair estimates prepared by marinas or other repair shops for completeness and reasonableness.  Negotiate revised estimates, when appropriate.

  • If no estimates are available or obtainable, preparation of a Damage Appraisal

  • Pre-loss and post-loss valuation of the vessel, where applicable


The surveyor will identify and recommend third party experts which may be needed to further evaluate damage and help define suitable repairs, especially for: 

  • Fire investigations

  • Complicated mechanical problems

  • Large areas of hull damage

  • Electrical problems in complex systems

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