Industry Issues

Container Weight FAQ

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Q: Is it correct that the SOLAS requirement for VGM does not apply to domestic movements even if the containers are stowed on ships which are subject to SOLAS chapter VI?

A: The SOLAS VGM requirements apply to ships on international voyages, having a gross tonnage of 500 tonnes or more. However, the individual Administration (flag state) may subject ships on domestic voyages to any SOLAS requirements, including in relation to VGM.

It should be recognized that a domestic movement may be prior to an international movement from a port of transhipment. It is suggested that the VGM be obtained at the earliest possible point in the supply chain for safety purposes, also recognizing that it will be required in any event as a pre-condition for ship loading at the transhipment port where weighing of the packed container may be impractical, if not impossible.

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