FROSIO Certified Coating & Paint Inspection Services

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An interview with Howard Jess, Paint Inspector

Currently working as an independent paint inspector specializing in the marine sector, Howard Jess is a NACE Level 2 Marine Paint Inspector and a developer of commercially adopted innovative coating technology who has published a number of technical papers and spoken at many international events.

Howard studied chemistry at the Glasgow College of Technology and has over 30 years of experience in the paint industry. He has overseen many Ecospeed applications, including the original coating of the British Antarctic Survey’s Ernest Shackleton in 2009, the Disney Cruise Line and Stena newbuilds in 2009 and 2010, and a number of other applications, small and large.

Ship Hull Performance (SHP):

What does an independent paint inspector do?
Howard Jess (HJ):

The main task of a paint inspector is to ensure that the client receives the best job possible. The client can be the owner of the asset, the applicator, or even a paint company. This can result in challenging situations when the inspector appears at a yard where he is not known and proceeds to tell people, who may have been doing the job for many years, that their work is unsatisfactory. If there are 20 workers who have been abrasive blasting steel all night it can lead to some 'difficult' discussions.

Inspectors are quality assurance, QA, for the client but more and more I see us as being used as quality control, QC, by applicators and paint companies.

When you’ve been in the same tank 10 times looking at the same type of poor preparation or application you know that there is minimal QC on site. Without a properly qualified inspector how does the owner know what is happening to his asset?

What is the paint inspector's particular value and contribution?

Immediately I would say their integrity and knowledge. If you buckle under pressure you are no good as a paint inspector. If you have only passed exams and have no on-site practical experience you would be as well staying at home. There are qualified inspectors, and well qualified at that, out there who have rarely been on site. Desk warriors not site dock warriors. I would like to see inspectors have a proven track record of on-site inspections before they progress up the professional ladder.

Please read more by downloading the full interview HERE