Before the late 1950s, the captain of a ship was confident that he knew what cargo was on his ship. He could easily watch the cargo being hauled over the gunwale and into the hold. The introduction of the container changed all that. Being loaded and then sealed miles from the port, the only evidence of what is in the container is a piece of paper.
Container cargo and weight misdeclaration – whether unintentional or otherwise – has been the bane of ocean freight container shipping since its beginning. “Inaccurate container weights have been a safety problem dogging the industry for a long period of time, and they weren’t getting better,” said Chris Koch, president of the World Shipping Council.
With ships growing in size and capacity, and containers carrying increasing global trade, the scourge is only getting worse.
In May 2014, the International Maritime Organization’s Maritime Safety Committee approved changes to the Safety of Life at Sea convention placing responsibility for compliance squarely on the shipper.
The USSA has always been active in providing its members with:
Please contact us to find out how to become a member of the association, or for further information.