The Manager's Guidance for Conducting Examinations

On this page, you can read the guidance of the BSS Manager which should be taken account of when booking, undertaking and administering BSS examinations.

BSS Examination Processes:

This page covers the instructions, recommendations and advice for carrying out examinations, reporting and communicating examinations and their findings [Link]

Since 2013 this operational matter must be adhered to:

LPG cylinder lockers - boat owners must ensure the BSS Examiner can carry out careful checking of the LPG cylinder locker for condition, including the removal of all loose portable items, base protection mats, removable false floors and the temporary removal of connected LPG cylinders.

Discuss theLPG cylinder locker arrangements with the owner in advance of the examination as this may require his attendance or him making prior arrangements involving service agents.

LPG lockers not accessible enough to allow an assessment of condition will involve the BSS Examiner having to return to carry out the check with the obstruction removed.

Where a boat uses A.C. shore-power and other a.c. power sources, the following notes on connection leads should be taken into account -

  • If practicable and safe to do so, boat owners should disconnect shore-power, battery charging, and other power sources in readiness for the BSS examination;
  • Boat owners should make available the shore-power, battery charging or other power source leads for examination of type and condition.
  • Information about the location of the a.c. consumer unit should be made known to the examiner in advance of the BSS examination.

What other points should be covered with the owner when booking an examination

Don't fall foul of issues related to the Recreational Craft Directive (RCD). Establish whether the boat you are about to examine is in scope of CE marking and if yes, is it CE Marked. If not follow these directions. It includes a form you can download you are advised to use when examining a boat holding an Annex IIIa certificate for the RCD. There are also links to much more background information on the RCD

A conflict of interests is where an examiner has a competing personal interest that has, or may be seen to have, the potential to influence and undermine the impartial judgement of the Examiner. Be very cautious about this matter, please read the Guidance if there is the slightest chance of a misunderstanding.

Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 can affect which boats some examiners are allowed to carry out manometer tightness test on, this section explain what you need to know.

Have you ever been asked to examine an amphibian or hovercraft and you have wondered what to do? The answer lies in this section.

Decommissioning: what is a decommissioned system, can it be a 'little bit gone'? What are the traps, what are the signs to note and what are the questions to ask?  Read this guide to what you can accept as a decommissioned or disabled  system.

The examination

If you've have just examined a boat that didn't pass, how long does the boat owner have to carry out remedial works after which time you need to undertake a full examination. The information also sets out the circumstance in which you must carry out all the checks for that section.

Forward dating the 'Expiry Date' - don't allow yourself to get muddled. There are strict criteria and these are set out clearly in this section. Click on the link and familiarise yourself with the rules

We have been researching the topic and there is a chance that you may find yourself at risk from an oxyhydrogen (HHO) generator.  Such equipment can also put people using or working on the waterways at risk too.  If you find one during an examination, you must not pass the boat - read more on what you must do.

Examination process or protocol queries

If you have a query about an examination protocol, please consider whether your enquiry can be made by via the 'Admin Clinic' facility in THE KIOSK section of the website.

For non-urgent calls please continue to use the main office number 0333 202 1000. If you get our automated answer please leave a voicemail message and give your name and contact number and a brief description of the subject matter and one of us will get back to you as soon as possible and generally within a couple of hours.

For urgent advice you can always call a BSS team member, we can all be contacted through the office number 0333 202 1000

When you call, say that you are an Examiner, provide your PIN and state the type of query, i.e.:

  • technical
  • a BSS Database/website
  • administrative query.

Provide a very brief overview. If it involves a specific boat please name it, or Examination Report please provide the BSSER ref, or check please provide the ECP part, section and check number number, but at the very least the part and section number.

You may also wish try to connect directly with a member of the team, remembering that they may not be able to reply immediately:

Technical and quality processes

Quality & Technical Manager



Technical and boat incident information



Marketing, website, BSS Database and boat incident information, policies and processes

Communications Manager (Rob McLean)

07710 175478

Website, BSS Database and boat incident information

Salesforce Administrator (Dave Phillips)

07484 912916

Policy, processes, stationery, registration, customer service, complaints.

Customer Service Officer (Janine Stafford)

07920 415389