Starting on 1 July 2016, a new container weight verification regulation comes into force for sea freight shipments around the world. This new International Maritime Organization (IMO) regulation will impact all parties involved in moving freight. The objective of the new sea freight regulation is to improve safety at sea for those working on ships by verifying the actual weight of containers before they are loaded as opposed to relying on documentation provided for each container. In reality, many times the documented weight varies from the actual weight which means containers may be loaded on ships in an unbalanced fashion.
Read on to learn more and view a handy infographic that explains the new regulation.
What does SOLAS mean?
SOLAS, which is the acronym for the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, is seen as one of the most important treaties that concern the safety of crew working on merchant ships. The very first version of SOLAS was adopted in response to the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. According to the IMO website, the most recent amendments to SOLAS chapter VI “require mandatory verification of the gross mass of containers, either by weighing the packed container; or weighing all packages and cargo items, using a certified method approved by the competent authority of the State in which packing of the container was completed.”
For shippers, this new sea freight regulation means one more step before containers can be loaded on to a ship. In a previous blog post, we explained the two options for sea freight container weight verification. To assist further in the explanation of the new process, have a look at the below infographic.