More needs to be done by BSC

Published: Friday, 12 October 2018

I AM AFRAID that James Henry perpetuates the myth (Are they in danger of sinking?) that the BSC confirms 'soundness', writes Martin Cox.

A boat can have a whole list of faults including leaking hull and low freeboard and still pass the BSC requirements.

BSC does not help matters

The BSC site states 'Its purpose is to help minimise the risk of boat fires, explosions, or pollution'. Unfortunately the BSC organisation does not help the matter by also stating that it is 'boat-equivalent of a MOT'.

It is not! For example the MOT includes the effect of rust on the safety of the car. The BSC does not incude the integrity of the hull. Although both the BSC and the MOT are only representative of the condition on the day they are carried out (i.e. a snapshot), the MOT is annual but a BSC is valid for four years.

Not a siurvey report

Last year we came across a broken down boat. It was about 15 years old. The new owner had just purchased it. Very smart paint job, but that was all. When I asked the boater if there was a survey report he proudly produced the BSC given to him by the vendor.

More needs to be done by the Boat Safety Scheme to make clear to potential newcomers to boating that it is not the same as a survey, and certainly withdraw the comparison to an MOT.