Cargo / hold condition
Fig: Applying cargo hold pre wash
It is the responsibility of the Master to ensure that the standard of cleanliness required in the cargo
holds for the carriage of the proposed cargo is fully understood by the Officers involved in hold cleaning
operations, and to ensure that the required standard has been achieved before presenting the vessel
The condition of the cargo itself must be noted, and if the Master suspects that the actual condition is
not as described by the shippers/charterers or their agents, he is to instruct the Chief Officer to make
comments on the mates receipts as appropriate, and to also ensure that these comments are copied
into the Bills of Lading. If there is any objection to these actions, the Master must inform the relevant
Management Office immediately. A P&I representative will be requested to attend on behalf of the
Owners and the Master is requested to give him every assistance in documenting the proceedings.
many cases, a P&I representative will be requested to attend for the purpose of conducting a preshipment
inspection of the cargo, the vessel being advised of this in advance. The need for a preshipment
inspection will very much depend on the type of commodity involved and the decision to carry
out such an inspection will usually be made by the Company although the Master may make a direct
request to the appropriate P&I Club for a representative to attend in the case of great urgency. This
will also apply to out-turn inspections at discharging ports.
If the Master suspects that the condition of
the cargo has changed during the voyage for whatever reason, he must inform the Managers
immediately along with as much information as possible on the affected cargo and the reasons for the
change of condition. The Company will then arrange an out-turn inspection by the appropriate P&I
representative. Once again, the Master is requested to give every assistance in the documentation of
Maintaining standard loading condition
All ships nominated for loading should
hold the appropriate valid statutory
certification including, if required, the
document of compliance for ships carrying
solid dangerous goods in bulk.
recommended that the period of validity of the
ship's certificates be sufficient to remain valid
during loading, voyage and unloading times,
plus a reserve to allow for delays in berthing,
inclement weather or both.
The ship owner, manager or operator,
when offering a ship for a particular cargo or
service, should ensure that the ship:
i) is maintained in a sound, seaworthy
ii) has on board a competent crew;
iii) has on board at least one officer
proficient in the languages used at both
the loading and unloading ports, or has
an officer available who is proficient in
the English language; and
iv) is free of defects that may prejudice the
ship's safe navigation, loading or
It is essential that a ship selected to
transport a solid bulk cargo be suitable for its
intended purpose taking into account the
terminals at which it will load or unload.
The charterer and shipper when
accepting a ship for a particular cargo or
service should ensure that the ship:
i) is suitable for access to the planned
loading or unloading facilities; and
ii) does not have cargo handling
equipment which would inhibit the
safety of the loading and unloading
Ships nominated for bulk loading
should be suitable for the intended cargo.
Suitable ships should be:
i) weather tight, and efficient in all
respects for the normal perils of the sea
and the intended voyage;
ii) provided with an approved stability and
loading booklet written in a language
understood by the ship's officers
concerned and using standard
expressions and abbreviations. If the
language is neither English, nor French,
nor Spanish, a translation into one of
these languages should be included;
iii) provided with hatch openings of
sufficient size to enable the cargo to be
loaded, stowed and unloaded
iv) provided with the hatch identification
numbers used in the loading manual
and loading or unloading plan. The
location, size and colour of these
numbers should be chosen so that they
are clearly visible to the operator of the
loading or unloading equipment.
It is recommended that all ships which are
required to carry out stress calculations should
have on board an approved loading instrument
for the rapid calculation of such stresses.
All propulsion and auxiliary machinery
should be in good functional order. Deck
equipment related to mooring and berthing
operations, including anchors, cables, mooring
lines, hawsers and winches, should be operable
and in good order and condition.
All hatches, hatch operating systems
and safety devices should be in good
functional order, and used only for their
List indication lights, if fitted, should
be tested prior to loading or unloading and
Ship's own cargo-handling equipment
should be properly certificated and maintained,
and used only under the general supervision of
suitably qualified ship's personnel.
Limitations of some bulk cargoes
Bulk cargoes like coal, sulphur and Direct Reduced Iron (DRI) can spontaneously undergo a chemical reaction and ignite/catch fire when in contact with heated surfaces.
While transporting such cargoes, crewmembers should keep in check the heat being emitted from fuel oil tanks.
Uncontrolled heating of fuel oil stored in double bottom (DB) tanks recently resulted in cargo damage.
Soya bean meal cargo in contact with the tank top of No 4 hold was charred and turned into a hard layer at the bottom of the hold.
In other holds, where DB tank temperatures were better controlled, the cargo was not affected.
Records proved that the cargo damage was attributable to inadvertent overheating of the DB fuel oil tank in way of No 4 hold during the voyage.
The ship had to be placed off-hire for three days for removal and disposal of the damaged cargo and a heavy cargo damage claim had to be settled with the consignee.
Experience has shown that grain, soya bean meal and many other kinds of agricultural produce are prone to damage if they come in contact with heated surfaces.
There are also several other bulk cargoes like coal, sulphur and direct reduced iron (DRI), which can immediately undergo a chemical reaction and ignite or catch fire when in contact with heated surfaces.
While transporting such cargoes, besides taking care to control the heating of fuel oil tanks, the recommendations of the IMSBC Code should be strictly followed.
Our detail pages illustrated many safety aspects of Bulk carrier
Home page |||Bulk carrier types
Handling of bulk coal |||Cargo planning
Carriage of grain
|||Risk of iron ores
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|||Care of cargo & vessel
|||Cargoes that may liquefy
|||Suitability of ships
|||Ballast handling procedure
|||Bulk carrier safety
|||Fire fighting systems
|||Bulk carrier General arrangement
Operation of sea going bulk carriers involved numerous hazards . Careful planning and exercising due caution for all critical shipboard matters are important . This site is a quick reference to international shipping community with guidance and information on the loading and discharging of modern bulk carriers so as to remain within the limitations as specified by the classification society.
- Navigation in
Ice & safety precautions
- Bulk carriers damage stability rules and guidelines
It is vital to reduce the likelihood of over-stressing the ship's structure and also complying with all essential safety measures for a safe passage at sea. Our detail pages contain various bulk carrier related topics that might be useful for people working on board and those who working ashore in the terminal. For any remarks please
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