Container weighing to become mandatory

DECEMBER 1, 2014 — A lot of shippers are going to hate this one. IMO's Maritime Safety Committee has decided to make it mandatory to weigh loaded containers before they are transported by sea. The new international regulations take effect on June 1, 2016.

Reporting on this development, the Danish Maritime Authority says the container's correct weight – the verified weight – can be determined in two ways. You can either weigh the loaded container at an approved weighing station or you can ensure that the individual items in the container are weighed and added to the container’s net weight.

Denmark has been one of the initiators of the new stricter requirements on the weighing of containers and has persistently maintained that mandatory regulations should be introduced for reasons of safety.

Since the freight rate depends on the weight, it has not been easy to get the provisions in place, says the Danish Maritime Authority. But now there is a general understanding that incorrect data may result in container stacks collapsing, containers falling over board and ship accidents as a consequence of overloaded ships. The fact that containerships are becoming larger and larger has contributed to an improved understanding of the problems.

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