ship handling

Home page|| Tanker Notes || Container Ship Operations || Ocean Navigation ||

How to avoid hull damage by stevedores or damage of cargo due improper handling ?

In case a third party including stevedores is responsible for an accident caused by work, such as Cargo handling, Bunkering, or Loading ships stores or the like, the Master shall handle the accident with appropriate steps ships owner to claim for damages.

In case a hull damage accident has occurred due to stevedores, the Master and Chief Officer shall take necessary measures . If possible, the Master shall, try to have the stevedores repair the damaged portion to restore it to the original state before departure. If any damage has affected the seaworthiness of the vessel, the Master is not to depart from port until suitable repairs are carried out and Class Survey done as necessary.

The ship classification process ensures that the ship’s hull, hatch covers, lashing bridges, cell guides and fixed fittings have sufficient strength. Loose fittings such as container securing components may be excluded from this certification process. Although a classification society may assess the adequacy of loose fittings and assign a class notation, this examination is additional to the mandatory ship classification process. P&l clubs require a ship to be approved for the carriage of containers by a classification society and for the container securing arrangements to at least meet that classification society’s design requirements.

Fig: Kyoto express incident

Tender of claim notice

The Master shall carry out the on-the-spot investigation with attendance of steve-dores side, tender the Claim Notice (Stevedore Hull Damage Report to the stevedores (Terminal superintendent or Manager only, not foreman) immediately after confirmation of the state of accident, and have him sign it.

In case there is a big damage or one affects seaworthiness, Master shall advise the Company by telephone immediately and if necessary prepare a detailed statement. Sometimes the Claim Notice shall be tendered directly to the stevedore, other times to the Charterer, depending on the provisions of the Charter Party.
Pay attention to that some Charter Parties require Charterer to be notified within 24 hours after the occurrence of an accident.
Give a copy of the signed Claim Notice to the stevedores and agent and fax or email same to Company and Operator.

Report to company

The Master shall notify the Company without delay of the following:

Whether damage will affect seaworthiness of the vessel
Whether cargo operations are / will be affected
Whether personnel working safety would be affected due to this damage
Has damage been repaired by the stevedores or will they repair it next voyage
Can damage be repaired by ships staff and is sufficient material available
Any arrangements like shifting cargo or keeping slots vacant required, to facilitate repairs
Will hot work be required and presence of any IMDG cargo in vicinity
Any scaffolding / staging required for repair and availability on board

While Company shall endeavor to have the Operators repair the damage, there may be circumstances when it will be requested to be done by ship staff. On receiving such request from operators, the company shall consider repair by ship staff and if necessary, instruct master to carry out such repair.
Upon completion of repair, the Master shall advise office of following:

Ships name and voyage number
Date and port where damage occurred
Location and extent of damage
Details of repair work carried out
Material used, also including oxy-acetylene gas, electrodes, paints etc
Man-hours utilized (separately for repair and painting work)
Other pertinent remarks.

Arrangement of survey
If the extent of the damage requires the arrangement of a Class Surveyor or Damage Survey, the Master shall consult with the Company.

Stevedore damage

If stevedores cause damage to the ship's equipment, the Master must take care to comply with the terms of the charter party relating to stevedores. Stevedores often are appointed by charterers, shippers, or receivers. However, charter parties may contain terms which provide that charterers are not responsible for any damage caused by stevedores. Examples of such clauses are as follows:

"Charterers, Shippers, Receivers shall not be responsible for the act and default of the Stevedores at loading/discharging ports. All claims for damage allegedly caused by Stevedores to be settled directly between Owners and Stevedores at loading/discharging ports. Master to notify Stevedores of damage, if any, in wriging within 24 hours after occurrence, otherwise Stevedores not to be held liable.”

"Charterers not to be responsible for Stevedore or other damage to the vessel unless notified in writing by the Master at the time of the occurrence of the damage or as soon as practical. The Master is to co-operate with Charterers and Agents in giving prompt Notice of Claim in writing to party causing damage and securing their admission of liability. Copy of correspondence, together with original letter acknowledging liability, if any, to be sent to Charterers. On damage occurring, Master shall immediately report telegraphically to Charterers.”

Charterers may not always escape liability as a result of such a clause. However, as owners rarely have any contractual contact with stevedores and thus have no direct recourse against them, it is important that the Master complies with any such clauses. Moreover, if all the documentation covering the incident has not been completed at the time of the incident, recovery may not be possible.

The Master should also ensure that all unrepaired stevedore damage is noted in any off-hire survey and that charterers are invited to inspect damage repairs being carried out in dry-dock. If the damage is minor and does not effect the vessel's seaworthiness or efficient state, repairs may be deferred to the next dry-docking.

Related articles

2 in 1 container operation in cargo hold

Safe Cargo operation Various guidelines

Other info pages !

Ships Charterparties Related terms & guideline
Stevedores injury How to prevent injury onboard
Environmental issues How to prevent marine pollution
Cargo & Ballast Handling Safety Guideline
Reefer cargo handling Troubleshoot and countermeasures
DG cargo handling Procedures & Guidelines
Safety in engine room Standard procedures
Questions from user and feedback Read our knowledgebase
Home page is merely an informational site about various aspects of ships operation,maintenance procedure, prevention of pollution and many safety guideline. The procedures explained here are only indicative, not exhaustive in nature and one must always be guided by practices of good seamanship.

User feedback is important to update our database. For any comment or suggestions please Contact us
Site Use and Privacy - Read our privacy policy and site use information.
//Home //Terms and conditions of use

Copyright © 2015 All rights reserved.