Container fleet and chief officer container vacancy
Due regard shall be paid to the racking limitations given by the container Manufacturers and wherever possible containers should be layered by weight with the heaviest container at the bottom.
Where a single tier of loaded containers is carried and provided they can either be twistlocked or pinlocked in position to the hatch cover deck, lashings may be dispensed with. Chief officer container vacancy,when containers are stacked more than one high the lashing plan for that vessel shall be followed.
Where containers are lashed on deck, reasonable access must be left for Crew Members to proceed to any part of the vessel and care must be taken to avoid blocking off Pilot Ladder access, fire hydrants, sounding pipes and deck valve controls.
The weight of the container and spreader (which can weigh up to 30 cwt.) must not exceed the SWL of the cargo gear onboard unless it is known that shore crane facilities equal to container + spreader weight are available at the load and discharge port.
The Statutory Requirements for the stowage and distribution of deck cargo and of the safety measures required are laid down in the Merchant Shipping (Load Line Deck Cargo) Regulations.
Further recommendations exist in the Code of Safe Working Practices for the safety of Merchant Seamen, and the basic requirements of the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act always apply. Known Regulations for ports in countries to be called at during a voyage shall also be adhered to, i.e. Panama Canal, USA etc. The onus of ensuring that safe access is provided to working spaces remains with the Master.
The stowage of deck cargo shall be planned as carefully as below deck stowage, not only with the safety of the cargo and vessel in mind but also the safety of the personnel proceeding with their required duties, both in normal situations and emergencies.
Stowage of deck cargo shall take into account the access which will be required for sounding pipes, fire hydrants, access to hatch controls and pilot ladder positions. Special provisions might have to be made in respect of large objects such as railway carriages or boilers etc.
In vessels which carry containers of refrigerated cargo the Chief Engineer is responsible for the monitoring and maintenance of the machinery and carrying temperatures while the containers are on board. If necessary the maintenance includes the need to call in contractors in intermediate ports if the repairs are beyond the vessel’s resources. The vessel’s local agents are to be consulted should the need for outside help arise. The Ship Manager is also to be advised should there be any possible reason to expect that the contents of a malfunctioning reefer container could deteriorate through unavoidable delays in effecting repairs.
Container vessels generally make up cargo plans independent of those provided by terminals.