At Ravenna port, receivers’ claims for alleged damages to cargo are very frequent. Shipowners do often receive letters of protest. With regard to steel products, the majority of protests are simply preventative. As a matter of fact, Ravenna is a “transit” port and the goods are discharged, warehoused for the time necessary to customs formalities and then forwarded by lorries to the final receivers. Owing to the above,no formal claim does usually follow after ships’ sailing, provided that protests are preventative. Indeed, some protests are a prelude to formal claims and are followed by requests of securities, as bank deposits or Club letters of undertaking. These imply the appointment of a Club Correspondent and a surveyor. Under these circumstances, it is important to determine since the earliest phase the nature of the protests and to evaluate the relevant potential consequences, so as to decide whether to appoint a surveyor / Correspondent and above all who is to be appointed. Luckily, the majority of Correspondents use to appoint competent surveyors, but it sometimes happens that surveyors are chosen on the basis of simple friendship or clientelar criteria. What's even more disturbing, non-resident Correspondents who do not have the necessary knowledge of port’s habits, people and behaviours, often take the liberty to appoint surveyors in Ravenna, always on the basis of the above-mentioned criteria. Contrary to what happens in the most European countries, the majority of Italian surveyors do not receive an appropriate training. Owing to the economic crisis, more and more often surveys are committed to companies and groups whose experience was and is limited to tallying and sampling operations. Clients should know that, in Italy, “Associated Surveyors” and “Inspection companies” are not real experts. These are groups of tallymen or ordinary inspectors who are not qualified to carry out surveys. Their action should be reasonably limited to draft surveys, tally surveys, or generic sampling operations. Surveys in connection with potentially extensive losses should be entrusted to professional surveyors. In Italy, all professionals are independent and individual surveyors.
P&I Ravenna