Press Release: ITIC reimburses surveyor accused of negligence leading to ferry damage


  • Date: 31/05/2017

International Transport Intermediaries Club (ITIC) has reimbursed a marine surveyor accused of negligence by the owner of a ferry which sustained significant machinery damage while being towed to a shipyard.

The ferry, which operated in North American waters, was due to be towed to a shipyard to undergo a refit. A marine surveyor was engaged by the shipyard to undertake a ‘fit for tow’ survey and to provide a certificate of approval confirming that the towage arrangements between the tug and the ferry were satisfactory.

The surveyor completed his survey and issued the certificate of approval. Three days later, however, the ferry took on water during the course of the tow and sustained considerable damage to its main machinery compartment. The owner of the vessel brought proceedings against the shipyard, the tug company and the marine surveyor for repair costs of US$750,000.

The owner alleged that the surveyor had been negligent in confirming that all watertight openings were closed, whereas expert evidence suggested that water had entered the vessel via open air vents. The surveyor maintained that these air vents were a rarity, that it was outside the scope of the survey to inspect them, and that liability should fall on the company undertaking the tow.

Mediation proceedings took place at which the owner acknowledged contributory negligence on its part and agreed to reduce its claim to US$500,000. All three defendants, including the marine surveyor, contributed to a settlement in this amount.

  • ITIC is managed by Thomas Miller. More details about the club and the services it offers can be found on ITIC’s website at www.itic-insure.com
  • The Admiralty Solicitors Group promotes and preserves standards in the practice of maritime law in England. As well as Admiralty Law issues, its interests also embrace dry matters, including the carriage of goods, sale and purchase, insurance and all other aspects of shipping law in which member firms play a prominent part.

PR0317 22 May 2017 

For more information:  Issued by:
Charlotte KirkChris Hewer
ITICMerlin Corporate Communications
Tel: +44 (0)20 7338 0150Tel: +44 (0)1903 50 20 50
Fax: +44 (0)20 7338 0151Fax: +44 (0)1903 50 02 72
itic@thomasmiller.comchris@merlinco.com
Get a quote

Get a Quote

Fill in the relevant proposal form to receive a quote.

Make a claim

Make a claim

Guidance on how to report a claim.

Talk to our experts

Talk to our experts

Contact us at ITIC.
+44 (0)20 7204 2928