Australian Maritime Safety Authority works on cargo securing
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) is launching a focused inspection program targeting arrangements for securing cargo on containerships entering Australian ports.
Incidents such as the losses of 81 containers off Newcastle by the YM Efficiency in 2018, 50 containers off Wollongong by the APL England in May and three Navios Unite containers off Cape Leeuwin in June have caused major environmental harm to Australia's unique marine and coastal landscape.
AMSA's incident reports have shown that unfit stacking and securing of cargo and inadequate maintenance of securing equipment are likely to have led to these accidents.
“We have seen the serious consequence of improper cargo securing arrangements in the form of tonnes plastics and other debris washing up on our beautiful beaches and floating in our oceans,” says AMSA Acting General Manager of Operations Michael Drake.
The focused inspection campaign will run from the beginning of August until the end of October and will involve both extended Port State inspections (PSC) and stand-alone inspections of vessels not currently eligible for PSC inspection.
“Rusted cargo securing points, improper lashings and exceeding stack weight limits have all contributed to these incidents and ship operators should be on notice that non-compliance will not be tolerated in Australia,” he added.
During this time a container ship is visiting Australia, the Master will expect AMSA to contact the ship as part of this focused campaign. Where vessels are found to be non-compliant AMSA must take action to bring the vessel into compliance before continuing to operate.
Maritime Business World