Dredgers are increasing in size, power, precision and sophistication.  Bureau Veritas helps you innovate safely and achieve compliance.

Supporting innovation in dredgers

Dredgers are built to fullfil a range of needs, from maintenance dredging to keep waterways navigable, to land reclamation, and activities relating to port construction, coastal engineering and offshore subsea construction. As owners seek greater productivity, dredgers have increased in size and power, creating new demands in terms of safety and compliance. Owners are also taking advantage of dynamic positioning to increase precision and reduce maneuvering time, and looking to solutions that improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions.

Bureau Veritas is the leading classification society for dredgers. We are at the forefront of innovation, classing a wide range of designs with various state-of-the-art propulsion systems.

The #1 class society for dredgers

Bureau Veritas is the classification society for over a third of dredgers in existence, making us the leader in this highly specialized market segment. Our history of classing dredgers goes back a long way: we published our first technical requirements for dredgers in 1909.


Deep understanding of dredger challenges

Today, we offer updated and comprehensive rules covering all types of dredgers: trailing suction hopper dredgers and cutter suction dredgers, as well as specialist dredgers (i.e. dipper dredgers, water injection dredgers and stone dumping vessels). Our Rules are based on in-service experience as well as research projects carried out in partnership with the dredging industry. They address specific issues relating to stability and structural arrangement, as well as design loads and hull strength. Updates to Rules take into account technical developments including fatigue assessments of larger hopper dredgers and stability of stone dumping vessels.

Full statutory compliance

Our expertise and involvement in the development of international regulations and guidelines enables us to support owners to comply with statutory requirements applicable to dredgers. These include standard regulations (i.e. SOLAS, ICLL and MARPOL) as well as the Guidelines for the Assignment of Reduced Freeboards for Dredgers.  

Improved environmental protection

Dredgers often operate in Environmental Control Areas, leading owners to investigate solutions that reduce emissions. Bureau Veritas classed the first ever LNG-fueled trailing suction hopper dredger. A LNG-fueled cutter suction dredger is currently being built under Bureau Veritas class. We have also classed innovative designs that improve fuel efficiency by optimizing hull shape or by adopting solutions such as a two-speed propulsion drive that reduce fuel consumption at lower speeds.

Specialist notation for Dynamic Positioning

Station keeping is paramount for dredgers engaged in high-precision subsea operations, particularly when working in waves or swell. Bureau Veritas offers the DYNAPOS family of class notations covering the certification of dynamic positioning systems.

Increased operational flexibility

A major technical development in regulations applicable to dredgers has been the introduction of operating areas, which have created the necessary link between the reduced dredging freeboard and longitudinal strength. Based on technical studies by Bureau Veritas, operating areas can be extended on the basis of the maximum significant wave height associated with the operating area notation of the dredger. This has increased the operational flexibility of dredgers.

35% of dredgers classed by Bureau Veritas (GT)
#1 for dredger classification
1909 The date Bureau Veritas published its first technical requirements for dredgers



Photo credit ©Royal IHC