Adam Equipment is ready to help shippers and carriers smoothly navigate new laws regulating maritime cargo weight certification. The Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) amendment takes effect July 1, 2016, and mandates that shippers and carriers provide accurate weight measurement and proper weight documentation of all shipping containers before they can be loaded onto ships.
What is SOLAS?
Following several accidents involving overloaded or improperly packed cargo transport vessels, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) took steps to address the problem. IMO oversees the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) convention, and passed the new amendment in May 2014 after reviewing existing regulations.
Before containers and goods can be loaded onto ships, the VGM (verified gross mass) is required for containers and goods. Weighing must be done in one of two approved ways, called Method 1 and Method 2, on scales calibrated and certified to the national standards of the country where the weighing was performed. Method 1 entails weighing the entire loaded container. Method 2 requires separate weighing of everything placed inside the container, including cartons, crates, pallets, and materials used to pack and secure the contents. Individual weights are totaled and added to the weight of the empty container to arrive at the VGM.
According to SOLAS, scales must meet certification and calibration standards issued by the country in which the scale is operated. Adam Equipment offers a selection of industrial scales that can help shippers and carriers with SOLAS compliance.