We’ve been spreading the good word about the amendments to the SOLAS convention (and the essential requirement for container’s verified gross mass prior to exporting). Here in Australia enforcement of these international rules is governed by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority. These new amendments fall under Marine Order 42, which has recently received a revamp to allow for these changes.
Please see below an excerpt off the Lloyd’s List website.
Marine Order 42 (Carriage, stowage and securing of cargoes and containers) 2016 has been released by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, albeit a mere 21 days before the rules enter into force.
Although it has been law for well over a decade to declare the gross mass of export containers, the new rules mandate that containers cannot be loaded onto ships without declaring a weight that has been verified to a particular standard using one of two approved methodologies.
The first method is to weigh the packed container using calibrated and certified equipment. The second method is to weigh everything in the container (including pallets, dunnage and so on) and then adding the weight of the container.
If the verified gross mass is not provided in time to the ship master and the terminal representative then the container “shall not be loaded onto the ship”.
The shipper of the container is defined as the “legal entity or person named on the bill of lading or sea waybill or equivalent multi-modal transport document… as shipper and/or who (or in whose name or on whose behalf) a contract of carriage has been concluded with a shipping company,” the International Maritime Organization states.
Work started at the International Maritime Organization in 2011 to develop a new law requiring verification of gross mass after a series of incidents affecting the health and safety of seafarers and shore-side workers. Several overweight containers had fallen onto the dockside thereby putting wharfies in danger and over-heavy containers had been implicated in several vessels suffering accidents and groundings.