The Coast Guard marine inspection program was developed with the intention of protecting individuals, their private property, and the marine environment from the consequences of incidents involving materially unsafe vessels. Inspections of U.S. vessels are generally made while they are not engaged in navigation; however, at times it is more conductive to vessel owners and operators to schedule an in-water inspection, such as an inspection for certification or mid-period (a.k.a. re-inspection) during a leg of a vessel's voyage. The inspection of a U.S. flagged vessel is intended to determine its compliance with the published minimum safety standards over a projected period of time. The issuance of a Certificate of Inspection (COI) attests to that reasonably probability.
The Officer in Charge, Marine Inspection (OCMI) Sector Lake Michigan is the vested final authority for the inspection of vessels in order to determine that they comply with the applicable laws, rules, and regulations relating to safe construction, equipment, manning, and operation and that they are in a seaworthy condition for the services in which they are operated.
The Inspections and Investigations Department, consists of four active duty marine inspectors working under the OCMI. We conduct commercial vessel safety exams on U.S. flag commercial vessels. The scope of inspections generally includes testing or examining the vessel's hull structure and machinery as well as the life saving, fire fighting, pollution prevention, and navigation systems for compliance with the applicable U.S. and International regulations. The vessel's size and service determines the type and frequency of these inspections.
In addition, the OCMI overseas new construction and repairs on U.S. flagged vessels at two shipyards and the only dry dock, in operation, that can accept a Great Lakes 1000’ freighter.
Inspectors can be contacted during regular work hours of 7:30 am to 4:00 PM, Monday to Friday (except Federal Holidays) at (920) 743-9448. After hours and on weekends, the Inspector can be contacted through the MSD Command Duty Officer at (414) 397-4423.