BSS Examination COVID-19 suspension lifted

Boat Safety Scheme (BSS) Examinations, suspended in the COVID-19 related lockdown, have now resumed for most boat owners, but they will happen in a ‘new normal’ framework based on the latest Government guidance.

Following the UK Government request that those who cannot work from home, should restart work where possible, the BSS has lifted the suspension on Examinations with a cautious framework designed to prevent transmission of the virus by the use of distancing between the boat owner and Examiner.

This move coincides with further government advice issued on Tuesday 13 May 2020, that private boating could resume on English waterways subject to conditions set by the relevant navigation authorities.

To help guide a boat owner through what are the ‘new normal’ preparations for BSS Examinations, we have created a dedicated webpage; go to to find out more.

We know those boat owners who are in self-isolation or who are shielding, especially but not exclusively liveaboards, will have many concerns about what this means for them.

The BSS will not be able to provide Examinations safely for their boats. Therefore for those people who are isolating or who are shielding, if their boat’s BSS Certification is due soon and their licence, registration, mooring or insurance usually depends on that Certification, we recommend that those boaters talk with their relevant navigation authority, mooring management or insurer and explain your situation.

We will issue further updates if there any changes in governmental guidance affecting BSS Examinations, including any information from devolved regions.

Boat Safety Scheme

Tel: 0333 202 1000