During cargo loading operations it is important to ascertain the cargo weight loaded into each individual cargo hold and the associated loading rate. Overloading the cargo hold will increase the stress levels in the ship's structure. At high loading rate ports, where there is no suitably positioned cargo weighing equipment, the ship's cargo officer should request that the terminal stops loading to allow draught surveys and displacement calculations to be performed to ensure compliance with the agreed loading plan.
An appropriately positioned cargo weighing device, which can provide continuously, or at least at each step, an accurate indication of the weight of cargo that has been loaded into each individual hold, is an important piece of equipment which can be used to avoid overloading of individual cargo holds. Therefore, suitably positioned weighing equipment should be installed at all terminals, especially those terminals with high loading rates.
The weight of cargo loaded onboard a ship is normally determined from the ship's draughts and, where fitted, shoreside weighing equipment.
Overloading of the ship's structure, can result from:
i) Inaccurate terminal weighing equipment providing incorrect data.
ii) The limited time available to check the draught and determine the load onboard especially at high loading rate terminals.
iii) Loading cargo in a hold, in excessive of the allowable limit, to compensate for partial bunkers. At some terminals the cargo weighing equipment is positioned at a location, remote from the loading operating position. In such cases it is difficult for the officer in charge to determine how much cargo has been loaded into a specific hold and this equipment may not provide the necessary accurate information.
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