Bunker supply quantity surveys (BQS)
Considering the present high bunker oil prices, we deem this type of survey absolutely necessary in order to make sure that the quantities as mentioned on the Bunker Delivery Notes BDN) are true and correct.
Before and after bunkering our surveyors calculate the contents of the cargo tanks ofthe barge, by means of manually sounding these tanks (thus not by reading the tank gauges) and taking the correct temperature of the oil into consideration.
The difference between the contents of the barge's cargo tanks, before and after bunkering, is the exact quantity of fuel oil supplied to the vessel and must be in line with the supplied quantity as mentioned on the BDN.
Unfortunately there still are ship owners/operators who are "penny wise pound foolish", and leave the above procedure to the chief engineer only; thus not appointing a surveyor; this in order to save survey costs.
ln this respect we wish to comment that in such cases the chief engineer often ends up with an incorrect (to his disadvantage) BDN quantity, which attributable to the fact that the chief engineer is not familiar with the barge's tank calibration scales in the Dutch language and with the operation of the barge's cargo computer.
Furthermore, upon his request to sound the barge’s cargo tanks by hand, instead of reading the gauges on the tanks, the chief engineer will face heavy opposition from the barge crew; since only reading the tank gauges is obviously what the barge skipper prefers and what ultimately will happen when no BQS surveyor has been appointed.
On a yearly base we implement about 1,500 BQS surveys, with a minimal track record of disputes.