March 14 - It will not only be fledgline insurance claims handlers who will be grateful for the new Hull and Machinery Guide produced by BMT Marine & Offshore Surveys Ltd, a member of BMT Group Ltd.

The guide offers advice on the technical aspects of marine hull and machinery insurance - a market handling many millions of dollars' worth of claims each year and BMT says that indications have already emerged that the guide will become a standard reference publication, in the light of the welcome it has received from leading figures in the London underwriting market and beyond.

Simon Stonehouse (Brit Insurance), one of the leading hull underwriters at Lloyd's, says: "This is an essential reference guide for the marine insurance industry and a most welcome initiative. It has been many years since something of this calibre has been published and, as it's available electronically, underwriters and claims teams can refer to it whenever and wherever - a great step forward."

The publication is seen by BMT Marine & Offshore Surveys Ltd as just a part of its professional interaction with ship operators, hull insurers, P&I providers, brokers and other specialists. It is set to be of value to experienced practitioners and newcomers alike, and all in between.

"Marine survey reports frequently contain engineering terminology which can be unfamiliar to the non-engineers in the wider spectrum of the shipping industry," says the lead author, Dinos Levantis, who was recently in London to personally introduce the guide to underwriters. "In an attempt to bridge this gap we have produced this guide, which covers some of the common terminology often encountered in survey reports for ships, their engines and their operations." Mr Levantis, who is based in Piraeus is the is business director for the Mediterranean and Eastern Europe region of the company and certainly qualified for his task as a naval architect, surveyor and marine engineer, with substantial experience in casualty investigations.

The guide can be downloaded from via the documents and resources section.