ANL Container ship on the water.

New Requirements – Verified Container Weight

Effective 1-Jul-2016 the International Maritime Organization (IMO) have adopted amendments requiring the containers’ gross weight to be verified prior to loading on a vessel. Containers without a verified gross mass (VGM) will not be loaded onto vessels from this date. This applies to all containers loaded on a vessel under the SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) regime.

This legislation was introduced to increase the safety of both terminal and vessel crew and to reduce the risk of damage to not only the shippers cargo, but other cargo on the vessel.

Prior to loading on a vessel the shipper needs to provide the carrier sufficient evidence of the VGM by either:

  1. Weighing the packed and sealed container using calibrated and certified equipment.
  2. Calculating the VGM by adding the weight of the goods, packing and securing materials and the tare weight of the container. This method needs to be certified and approved by a national regulatory body.

Only the methods listed above will be accepted with estimations explicitly excluded.

When importing or exporting containers with us, please ensure you have completed a Container Weight Declaration form (downloadable HERE) for each shipment.

The full text of the new requirement can be found HERE and further information about IMO guidelines can be found on the Australian Maritime Safety Authority website HERE.