The development of reliability-based design criteria for surface ship structures needs to consider the following three components: (1) loads, (2) structural strength, and (3) methods of reliability analysis. A methodology for reliability-based design of ship structures was developed and implemented. The methodology consists of the following two approaches: (1) direct reliability-based design, and (2) load and resistance factor design (LRFD) rules. Reliability-based design rules were developed at several levels of structural systems that include the hull-girder, grillage, panel, plate and detail levels. This multi-year effort contributed towards the development of the American Bureau of Shipping Rules for the U. S. Navy. Fatigue design in these rules are based on products from this research effort that first appeared in the special issue of the American Society of Naval Engineers Naval Engineers Journal.