In this issue we focus on The Society of Consulting Marine Engineers and Ship Surveyors (SCMS) which was was founded in 1920 to provide a central organisation for Consulting Marine Engineers, Naval Architects and Ship Surveyors.
In late 1919 a number of distinguished Marine Consultants in the UK thought that their profession would benefit from the creation of an appropriate professional Society to set standards and represent the active practitioners in the field.
In March 1920, after agreeing it’s Memorandum and Articles of Association, The Society of Consulting and Marine Engineers and Ship's Surveyors was legally established as a professional body. Its founders insisted that it should be an association of experienced and established professionals who would be committed to the pursuit of excellence in the execution of their professional expertise.
Members' clients include ship owners, marine underwriters, average adjusters, P & I clubs, ship and engine builders, salvage associations, class societies, statutory authorities, offshore industry, harbour authorities, legal profession and others. Many of the Society's members act as Expert Witnesses , participating in arbitration either as arbitrators or as expert witness, advisers in charter party disputes, and as technical advisers to the Chair or Enquiry Panel in marine enquiries and investigations.
One of the principal objectives of the Society has been to ensure that its members should have both the academic qualifications and the practical experience necessary for the proper execution of the professional services they are offering, this objective being secured by requiring applicants for Membership to submit acceptable CV supported by three Members or Fellows of the Society having personal knowledge of the applicants as sponsors.
Every year a Members directory is sent to every member and industry contacts worldwide. The Society's members offer a comprehensive range of technical marine services, academic and practical capabilities derived from extensive expertise. While the full range of services may not be offered by every member it is shared by the total membership, and whatever service may be required it is sure to be available in the repertoire of some member or members.
In 2005 the Society became a member of Federation of European Maritime Associations of Surveyors and Consultants (FEMAS). The main benefits of FEMAS Membership are to enable the Society to have a say in the deliberations of the European Parliament and to help ensure high standards for European Marine Surveyors are maintained. SCMS have also been appointed as an Authorised Certifying Authority by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) for statutory surveys of small commercial vessels, police vessels, pilot boats and small workboats; and actively participates within the various MCA working parties in their policy of delegation of statutory surveys and certification. The Society is actively involved in harmonising the various MCA Small Vessel Codes.