Japan P&I Club issues Loss Prevention Bulletin No.26
Japan P&I Club has published a Loss Prevention Bulletin No. 26 – Solid Bulk Cargoes Part 1, which is the first of three bulletins, dealing with what should be known, what should be done, and what records should be kept and retained for future reference during the various stages of the voyage when a solid bulk cargo is carried out.
During a voyage when a solid bulk cargo is carried, there isthe potential for problems to be encountered at all stages:during the planning and preparation stage; during the actualloading of the cargo; during the voyage when the cargo mustbe properly and appropriately cared for; and during the offloading operation.
There might be failings which lead to: mis-identificationof the cargo; incorrect and poor preparation of the vessel;inadequate or incorrect monitoring of events; damage to thevessel; damage to the cargo and, very importantly, injuryto crew members or fatalities. When such failings occur,and if they are not dealt with properly and/or correctedwithout delay, additional costs and claims may arise inconnection with incorrect completion of documents and/orincorrect documents being issued; the vessel being not in anappropriate condition to carry the cargo; the cargo being notas described and/or not suitable for carriage to the nominateddestination; and damage being sustained by the cargo duringthe voyage.
At the beginning of each voyage the vessel should be in aseaworthy condition and fit for the carriage of the nominatedcargo. The master should prepare loading and dischargeplans and complete strength and stability calculationsto demonstrate that the cargo can be loaded, carried anddischarged as required. Loading should be closely monitoredto ensure that the cargo is stowed on board as required, andde-ballasting should be carried out as planned. The dischargeshould be closely monitored to ensure that the cargo is offloaded as required, and ballasting should be carried out asplanned. Close liaison with the stevedores’ personnel shouldbe maintained throughout loading and discharging.
Allinstructions and information provided variously by shippers,any charterers, receivers, and any other party involved,should be assessed in conjunction with accepted practice andpublished guidance and requirements, and should be followedand/or utilised as appropriate. During all of the stages,records should be kept of all appropriate information and ofall important exchanges between the parties involved, andthose records should be safely retained for future reference.We also recommend that photographs are taken at certaintimes and of certain things, which can be used at a later date. to show the situation as seen by the master and ship’s officers. For example, photographs of the cargo, of the loadingmachinery, of the discharge machinery, and also perhaps ofthe personnel involved in disputes.
While the planning of the voyage is underway, the mastershould make reference to the procedures set out in thevessel’s Safety Management System, and he should consultthe appropriate IMO publications, including the IMSBCCode, the BLU Code and recommendations on ballast watermanagement, and on the fumigation of cargo in stowageif appropriate. He should also consult, as necessary, otherpublications.
If there is any doubt about any aspect of theintended voyage, the master should discuss his concerns withthe appropriate person in the manager’s office and, if thoughtnecessary, an independent surveyor should be consulted.This article is the first of three articles, and deals with theinitial planning of the voyage and the preparation of the vessel for the intended cargo. In the second article, the planningof loading (with appropriate calculations) and the actualloading of the cargo will be dealt with, and in the third articlewe will deal with care of the cargo during the voyage and theoff-loading operation.
In the Japan P&I Club Bulletin you will findOperational failures and their likely Consequencesas well as theSteps Towards Successful Preparation of the Vessel.
These steps are further reviewed as follows
- Safety Management System Requirements
- Identification of Cargo to be Loaded
- Carriage Requirements
- Hold Cleanliness Requirements
- Hold Preparation
- Weather-Deck Hatch Cover Arrangements, Accesses and Ventilation Arrangements
Hose-testing or ultrasonic testing of hatches is an essential part of the preparation of the vessel
(Image Credit: Japan P&I)
Examples of problemswhich are encountered many times are included – often because of unforeseen circumstances – and ways by which those problemscan be avoided. The guidance and recommendations are notexhaustive and of course, include everything thatthe master should bear in mind before and during loadingoperations involving a solid bulk cargo. Also, some parts will not apply. For example, a cargo of coal might notrequire thoroughly cleaned holds, whilst grain will; whereasa cargo of coal might be a Group A commodity under theIMSBC Code, whereas grain is not.
There are a few primary rules, as follows
1. Ensure that the identity of the cargo to be carried is known and that the name of the cargo is internationally recognised either as a grain under the International Grain Code or by using the Bulk Cargo Shipping Name (BCSN) as detailed in the IMSBC Code. A trade name is not a BCSN.
2. Ensure that the cargo holds are properly andappropriately cleaned and prepared for the cargo which is to be loaded.
3. Ensure that all necessary maintenance has been completed before loading is to be started.
4. Plan the loading operation thoroughly, following all SMS requirements and all instructions from charterers, as appropriate.
5. Ensure that the appropriate carriage instructions are obtained.
For further information, read the Loss Prevention Bulletin No.26Solid Bulk Cargoes – Preparation of the Vessel
Source: Japan P&I Club