Thursday, June 18, 2015

What Goes In a Visual Inspection Report?

Hi, Paul,

Could you let me know what information you think should be included in a visual welding inspection report?
I’m seeing a lot about what the inspector should be verifying, but not the actual items that should be in the report.
 I appreciate your help.
Best Regards,
 Anthony N.

Good question.  For NDE (nondestructive evaluation) we typically go to our code books to find the correct forms required.  Although using those specific forms isn’t a requirement, they are a great guide to determine what information we need to capture. 
Visual Inspection (VT [visual testing]) is a form of NDE, but I’m not aware of a code supplied form for recording it.  There is no simple form to download and fill out when it comes to VT.
In my day-to-day, I may use a spread sheet, a Word doc, or the old reliable composition note book.  It all depends on my situation.
As for what information to capture? My guidelines are; keep it simple... Let’s assume AWS D1.1 is our code. Sub-Clause 6.9 states, “All welds shall be visually inspected...”  That doesn’t leave a lot of “wiggle-room”.  We know we have to look at all welds.  It also states, “...and shall be acceptable if the criteria of Table 6.1 are satisfied.”  So now we know our acceptance criteria.
At a minimum your visual inspection (VT) report should state:
What was the date of fabrication?
What was the part/print number?
What was the welds location?
What was the acceptance criteria? (i.e.: AWS D1.1:2010 Table 6.1, Statically Loaded)
Did it meet the requirement?
Did anything restrict your inspection? (i.e.: Part was galvanized, Root was lot accessible, Roof decking covered weld face...)
Was it acceptable?
What is the date of inspection?
...and always add your name (legibly), signature and CWI# (if applicable).
Remember, listen to your customer to gage the level of detail requested, but always make the report clear enough so you understand what was written long after the project is complete.
Good Luck,

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