Inspections of Recognised Organisations

Classification societies are organisations which develop and apply technical standards for the design, construction and survey of ships and which carry out surveys and inspections on board ships. Flag states can authorise classification societies to act on their behalf to carry out statutory survey and certification work of their ships. Worldwide there are more than 50 classification societies but only 11 classification societies are presently recognised by the European Commission. This recognition allows them to act as Recognised Organisation on behalf of EU Member States.

EU Member States can only authorise a classification society recognised by the European Commission.

The European Union legislation that deals with classification societies is Regulation (EC) No 391/2009 and Directive 2009/15/EC. The European Commission assesses each of the EU recognised organisations once every two years. EMSA has been entrusted by the Commission with the task of carrying out the necessary inspections and therefore, EMSA carries out a number of inspections of each recognised organisation every year. This includes inspections of head offices and selected regional, field and site offices and also includes visits to ships, all for the purpose of verifying the performance of the recognised organisations. EMSA also carries out the necessary inspections of organisations for which recognition has been requested by a Member State.

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