Container loaded with discarded lithium batteries catches fire

Photo of the fire damage caused by the burnt discarded lithium batteries taken by the U.S. Coast Guard
Photo of the fire damage caused by the burnt discarded lithium batteries taken by the U.S. Coast Guard

The U.S. Coast Guard has issued a safety alert and is warning about the hazards of transporting discarded lithium batteries after a container illegally loaded with them caught fire while en route to the Port of Virginia, where it was set to be loaded onto a ship.

Thankfully the container was not loaded on a ship at the time. Rather, the container was being transported on a chassis from Raleigh, North Carolina when the discarded lithium batteries caught fire on the highway on August 19, 2021, resulting in loss of the cargo and significant damage to the shipping container. Continue reading “Container loaded with discarded lithium batteries catches fire”

Hapag-Lloyd adopts Hazcheck Detect cargo screening tool for misdeclared and undeclared dangerous goods

NCB Group, the New York based cargo inspection company and the leading provider of transportation software has announced that Hapag-Lloyd, one of the leading liner shipping companies, has signed an agreement to adopt the Hazcheck Detect cargo screening tool to detect misdeclared and undeclared dangerous goods in containerised shipments. The solution has been developed and will be delivered by NCB’s software division, Exis Technologies, global leaders in IT solutions for the management of dangerous goods in sea transport.

Hazcheck Detect scans all cargo booking details for keywords and includes an industry library to enable suspicious bookings to be Continue reading “Hapag-Lloyd adopts Hazcheck Detect cargo screening tool for misdeclared and undeclared dangerous goods”

What you need to know about preventing fires onboard containerships

A collaboration between Standard Club and David Townsend, Principle Fire Investigator at Andrew Moore & Associates Ltd, has resulted in a helpful loss prevention alert being released that focuses on container fires while offering some suggestions for dealing with and improving the situation.

According to Mr. Moore, there has been an increasing number of fires onboard containerships in recent years, some with disastrous consequences, not only for the shipowner and the crew on board but also for the environment and the shipping industry’s reputation.

He added that fire safety in container shipping has, for various reasons, and predominantly due to the sheer capacity, become Continue reading “What you need to know about preventing fires onboard containerships”

Loss of over one hundred containers from Zim Kingston due to heavy weather and port congestion says initial report.

The container ship Zim Kingston that spilled 109 boxes off the Strait of Juan de Fuca on October 22 was at sea in a storm caused directly as a result of port congestion says a new report. Using satellite AIS data, Seattle public radio station KUOW found that the Zim Kingston loitered off the strait’s entrance in gale conditions, moving at three knots on a course beam to the prevailing winds for about six hours.

While she was off the Strait, significant wave heights of about 16 to 20 feet were noted and the sustained wind speeds were in the range of 35-40 knots. The Zim Kingston began to roll through 35 degrees, and with extreme forces acting on her stacked deck cargo, she lost more than 100 containers over the side. Continue reading “Loss of over one hundred containers from Zim Kingston due to heavy weather and port congestion says initial report.”

Practical aspects of the carriage of containers on dry bulk vessels

Practical aspects of the carriage of containers on dry bulk vessels
Practical aspects of the carriage of containers on dry bulk vessels

Mark Dunbar, Surveys Manager at West P&I Club, has highlighted practical aspects on the carriage of containers onboard dry bulk vessels. And as he says, individual cases will vary widely so the following should not be taken as exhaustive, but as an aide memoire for the major factors that need to be considered and addressed.

– Bridge visibility needs to meet SOLAS requirements.
– Vessel stability including bending moments and shear forces to be verified as within limits.
– Container stacking weights – check CSC plate for maximum allowable – US 53 foot containers are usually significantlylower than standard ISO containers.
– Strength of tanktop/hatch covers/deck plating – remember all the weight of a container is distributed Continue reading “Practical aspects of the carriage of containers on dry bulk vessels”

Preventing wet cargo damage

Preventing wet cargo damage - Image: Swedish Club
Preventing wet cargo damage – Image: Swedish Club

Claims relating to wet cargo damage are all too frequent. Many of these can be avoided entirely with a robust pre-loading condition checking procedure. While humidity and condensation are inevitable challenges through the supply chain, pre-existing CTU damages should be an easy check.

As TT Club regularly articulates, around 65% of cargo damage incidents are attributable in part to the way that goods are packed within the cargo transport unit (CTU). The CTU Code and the more recent ‘CTU Code – a quick guide’ and complementary container packing checklist published by the Cargo Integrity Group, provide invaluable guidance for actors in the supply chain to mitigate such risks. Continue reading “Preventing wet cargo damage”

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