Class Certification
Classification societies are organizations that establish and apply technical standards in relation to the design, construction and survey of marine related facilities including ships and offshore structures. These standards are issued by the classification society as published rules. A vessel that has been designed and built to the appropriate rules of a society may apply for a Certificate of Classification from that society. The society issues this certificate upon completion of relevant classification surveys.
Such a certificate does not imply, and should not be construed as an express warranty of safety, fitness for purpose or seaworthiness of the ship. It is an attestation only that the vessel is in compliance with the standards that have been developed and published by the society issuing the classification certificate.
More than 50 organizations worldwide define their activities as providing marine classification. Ten of those organizations form the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS). It is estimated that these ten societies, together with the one additional society that has been accorded associate status by IACS, collectively class about 94 percent of all shipping tonnage involved in international trade worldwide.
International Association of Classification Societies (IACS) currently consists of 10 member societies and one associate, details of which are listed below. Chairmanship of IACS is on a rotational basis with each member society taking a turn.
ABS (American Bureau of Shipping)
BV (Bureau Veritas)
CCS (China Classification Society)
DNV (Det Norske Veritas)
GL (Germanischer Lloyd)
TL (Turk Loydu)
LR (Lloyd's Register)
NK (Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK)
RINA (Registro Italiano Navale)
RS (Russian Maritime Register)
HRS (Hellenic Register of Shipping)
RS (Indian Register of Shipping)
Classification is one element within a network of maritime safety partners. Other elements are parties such as the ship-owner, the shipbuilder, the flag State, port States, underwriters, shipping financiers and charterers among others.
The role of classification societies has been recognized in the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) and in the 1988 Protocol to the International Convention on Load Lines. As an independent, self-regulating body, a classification society has no commercial interests related to ship design, ship building, ship ownership, ship operation, ship management, ship maintenance or repairs, insurance or chartering. In establishing its rules, each classification society may draw upon the advice and review of members of the industry who are considered expert in their field.
Classification rules are developed to contribute to the structural strength and integrity of essential parts of the ship’s hull and its appendages, and the reliability and the function of the propulsion and steering systems, power generation and those other features and auxiliary systems which have been built into the ship in order to maintain essential services on board.
Classification rules are not intended as a design code and in fact cannot be used as such. A ship built in accordance with an IACS Member's rules will be assigned a class designation by the society on satisfactory completion of the relevant surveys. For ships in service, the society carries out surveys to ascertain that the ship remains in compliance with those rules. Should any defects that may affect class become apparent, or damages be sustained between the relevant surveys, the ship owner and operator are required to inform the society concerned without delay.
A ship is maintained in class provided that the relevant rules have, in the opinion of the society concerned, been complied with and surveys carried out in accordance with its rules. Classification societies also maintain significant research departments that contribute towards the on-going development of appropriate, advanced technical standards.
All classification societies publish an annual register and the most well known of these is Lloyd’s Register.

Turk Loydu Foundation
Türk Loydu was first founded in 1962 and became a nonprofit organization in 1966. With the amendments to its articles of incorporation and bylaws done in 1986, the foundation reached its current form.
Classification Procedure
For classification of a new ship, a Classification Request Form shall be completed and submitted to TÜRK LOYDU. The form should be completed entirely, and in case of a hesitation, the applicant should apply to TÜRK LOYDU. TÜRK LOYDU Classification and Survey Rules and particularly the section titled Class notations should be checked in an effort to avoid any problems in the future.
  • The classification offer issued by TÜRK LOYDU considering the type, tonnage, sizes and specifications of the ship to be constructed shall be transmitted by TÜRK LOYDU to the applicant in writing.

  • When the offer is acceptable and confirmed in writing, classification contract is issued, and after its execution, classification works commence.

  • Before starting the construction of the vessels to be constructed under control of TÜRK LOYDU, necessary drawings and documentations should be submitted to TÜRK LOYDU for approval purposes. All liabilities in case of problems or incompatibilities due to submission of drawings and documentation after start of construction shall be for the account of the applicant. First, the drawings and calculations as to general and steel hull structure, then the drawings and calculations for machinery, electrical system and automation system, if any, shall be submitted to TÜRK LOYDU for approval purposes. In case of the special ship types, TÜRK LOYDU will further be provided with the other drawings and calculations showing specifications of the vessels, as well as documentation on statutory certificates, if requested. If the requested drawings, calculations and documentation are not fully submitted, TÜRK LOYDU will not be in a position to issue a certificate.
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Hellenic Register Of Shipping
HRS is a non-governmental International Organization, dedicated to the safeguarding of life and property at sea, the prevention of marine pollution and the quality assurance in industry. Since its foundation in 1919, Hellenic Register of Shipping (H.R.S.) has developed a network of survey offices worldwide, manned mostly by exclusive surveyors.
H.R.S. serves the international maritime and industrial communities offering the following services:
  • Surveys and classification of all types of vessels and offshore installations.

  • Supervision and plan approval of new buildings, conversions, and/or modifications of vessels, offshore installations, machinery, boilers and industrial components and materials.

  • Statutory surveys and issuance of relevant certificates on behalf of 28 Governments.

  • Safety Management Certification of ship Managing companies as well as their ships in compliance with the ISM Code.

  • Quality Systems certification in compliance with the ISO 9000 series standards.

  • Environmental Management Systems Certification against the ISO 14001 standard.

  • Publication and codification of technical rules and regulations.

  • Certification in compliance with International Ship & Port Facility Security Code.

In May 1994, the society made available its revised Rules and Regulations in line with the IMO resolutions and the IACS Unified Requirements. The majority of new buildings and ships submitted to conversion or modification in the Greek Shipyards are made under HRS’ supervision. It is to be noted that most ships of the Hellenic Navy built in Greece, are under HRS’ supervision.
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With an order book to class 25% of the worldwide production of mega-yachts, RINA has a long tradition in the classification and certification of yachts. Up to today more than 980 pleasure craft are classed with RINA, amounting to about 160,000 GT; new buildings planned to enter RINA Class are 420 for a gross tonnage exceeding 60,000 GT.
RINA is investing in the yachting market, developing new rules and services, which include all recent international standards, leveraging on its experience directly from the cruise ship sector.
Its strength lies in its quick and highly valued service during the yacht's life cycle, starting from the construction, testing of materials and components to the in-service periodical surveys for maintenance of class; all these matters ensure owners and manufacturers that their yachts meet the highest safety standards and enhance their commercial and qualitative value during their life-time.
Yacht Class
The RINA Rules cover the traditional field of private pleasure craft and the rapidly growing sector of charter yachts. The RINA Rules for the Classification of Charter Yachts (2006) offer designers and shipyards the appropriate tools to design and build yachts which comply with the Code of Safety for Charter Yachts, and owners and charterers evidence of the maintenance of the applicable standards.
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CE Certificate
Recreational Craft Directive
The Recreational Craft Directive applies to the marketing and putting into service of pleasure craft, partially completed boats and certain loose and assembled components.
In accordance with the Directive, recreational craft are understood to mean any craft intended for sport or leisure purposes, regardless of the type or the means of propulsion, with a hull length of 2.5 meters to 24 meters, measured according to the appropriate harmonized standards. The Directive includes several exceptions that fall outside the scope of the Directive. A CE marking indicates that a craft complies with all of the provisions of the Directive. If you are uncertain whether your craft will be required to comply with the requirements (or certain requirements), or you are not sure which compliance procedure is necessary for your craft.
Each design category (A, B, C and D) is subject to different requirements in terms of demonstrating that a craft complies with the requirements laid down in the Directive.
Owner’s manual
Each craft must be provided with an owner’s manual in the Official Community language or languages, which may be determined by the Member State in which it is marketed in accordance with the Treaty
Technical file
The technical documentation accompanying a craft must provide an insight into the design, production process and operation of the product and also make it possible to evaluate whether the requirements of the Directive have been met.
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