Industry Issues

Container Weight FAQ

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Q: Some weighbridges don’t produce tickets. Would a gross mass being written on driver’s consignment note, signed and stamped by the load point be acceptable?

A: As an International issue, there is no requirement under SOLAS that a ‘weight ticket’ or similar must be provided. What SOLAS requires is that the shipper communicates the verified gross mass in a ‘shipping document’ that can be part of the shipping instructions or be a separate communication. In either case, the document should clearly highlight that the gross mass provided is the ‘verified gross mass’, and the document must be signed by a person duly authorised by the shipper (the signature may be an electronic signature or may be replaced by the name in capitals of the person authorised to sign it).

As a National issue, national governments may, as part of their enforcement policies, require that shippers using Method 1 are in a position, upon request, to produce weight tickets or other documentation as deemed acceptable pursuant to national rules and regulations.

As a commercial issue, it should be recognised that the shipper remains responsible to obtain and communicate the verified gross mass. There are inevitable process challenges to ensure effective coordination between the shipper and haulier to achieve effective documentary hand-off (whether electronic or paper) to avoid in-gate delays. Such processes should be discussed between the commercial parties, including the maritime carrier and the terminal operator.

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