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About Neil Haynes

Founder of Blue Water Surveys
Boat Surveyor

Captain Neil Haynes is a certified Surveyor with the National Association of Marine Surveyors and he is also an accredited Surveyor with the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors. He is also a member of the International Association of Marine Investigators, member of the American Boat and Yacht Council and the National Fire Protection Agency.


He has been surveying for the past 43 years and surveys both mono-hulls and multi-hulls, power and sail. He has lived aboard five different auxiliary sailing vessels for 38 years and has cruised extensively in the Caribbean Basin. His qualifications as a P.A.D.I. Master Scuba Diver has given him many insights into salvage situations, anchoring techniques and embedment equipment relative to his chosen discipline.

While running his family’s full-service marina in Wrightsville Beach NC, importers of Cheoy Lee sailing auxiliaries, he worked as a consultant for Globe Yachts in Taipei, Taiwan. His prior boatbuilding experience began with the construction of a William Atkins design Little Ranger, out of Ferro cement. He also managed and ran Simmons Sea Skiffs, builders of lap strake wood ocean skiffs from 20 to 25′. Here he was taken under the wing of T.N. Simmons, who in Neil’s words “was a great blessing, and unselfishly shared his trade and friendship deeply impacting my life.”

He presently holds a 100-ton Master license and was a licensed captain for 25 years (now retired).

Smitten with the sailing “bug” at age 10,

he has never looked landward for his calling.

His surveying career started in Savannah Georgia with Vessel and Cargo Surveys where he understudied Joseph Dimock, an around the world ship captain and surveyor who simply told it as it was. Here he surveyed primarily fishing craft and yachts with some cargo out turns.

He moved to St. Thomas U.S.V.I. where he worked and sailed for seven years on a 45′ steel schooner that he and his wife Ginny built. They sailed back to the United States where they sold the schooner “Two Can” and took their 6-month-old daughter to Venezuela to build their dream boat. In Neil’s words “The economic door was slammed shut on us with no plan B”.

He ended up back in St. Thomas where they purchased a 42′ sloop and began working for B.A. Johnson and Associates, at that time named the Lloyds agents in the U.S.V.I. as a staff surveyor.

As much as a tragedy as hurricane Hugo was, it proved to be a great instructor for salvage procedures for Neil, it gave him many challenges. After adjusting all assigned damage claims for the London market, he travelled to Puerto Rico to work for the Francis B. Crocco in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Here he ran a branch office and surveyed yachts and did audio gauge surveys on double skin tankers and off shore fuel barges. Neil still maintains state of the art audio gauge equipment for metal yachts. The experiences he gained by surveying large custom and semi-custom auxiliary sailing yachts from all over the world has served him well.

Neil has a passion for is assisting people who have a desire to go cruising and help choose a proper boat for their sailing adventures!

He also enjoys imparting his practical experience to those of a like mind and is the first to admit that much of his knowledge was acquired by experience and has been gained from what he calls “The Humility Factor.” 

If you are a family looking for a way to cement your tribe together, a boating adventure can galvanize your fragmented existence like no other.

If you want a comprehensive survey by someone who is not an armchair sailor, give Neil a call; you won’t be sorry.








Learn more about I.A.M.I, N.A.M.S. or S.A.M.S. by clicking on their logos below.

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International Association of Marine Investigators
Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors
International Association of Marine Consultants and Surveyors
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