Cargo hold cleaning: Why it matters

0 comments
Cargo hold cleaning: Why it matters

Above image is used for illustration purposes only

Cargo hold cleaning: Why it matters

Bulk carriers constitute a significant fragment of the global maritime transport of goods, making up 15–17% of the world’s merchant fleets. Bulk carrier operations require careful planning and preparation to maintain cargo quality as is and to avoid any delays and disputes. One critical aspect of this preparation is the cargo hold cleaning.

Maritime Knowledge | 12/11/18

The efficiency of a bulk carrier in vastly accounted to its cargo holds and the volume of cargo it can carry. The whole operation involving the loading, the safe transfer and the unloading of the cargo is a complex procedure requiring diligent preparation, a key part of which is cargo hold cleaning. Despite the time pressure, this step should not be neglected, as it can directly affect the bottom line of the whole operation.

Complying with regulatory requirements of safe cargo cleaning is not a simple task and involves taking into account equipment, documentation needed, and properly trained crew, to make sure that the cargo holds are properly cleaned after each discharge and prepared to take the next load. But why is cargo hold cleaning so important?

Not meeting the expected requirements in terms of proper cleaning can lead not only to claims related to cargo quality, such as contamination, but even at charter party disputes and off-hire claims.

#5 reasons why cargo hold cleaning matters

  1. Inadequate cleaning can cause cargo contamination, leading to cargo damage claims from the receivers. For instance, if contaminated by residues, cement loses its binding capacity, salt becomes liquid and sugar can ferment. A single piece of coal left behind can get the hold failed.
  2. The consequences of non-compliance can be costly. Vessels may be held in port until surveyors are satisfied, but a ship is only earning while at sea and not in port, meaning that time in port must be kept to minimum.
  3. Insufficient cleaning of the intended cargo and not meeting the charterer requirements can lead to delays and charter party disputes, which can lead even to the risk of off-hire. An off-hire clause is providing for exceptions from the obligation for charterers to pay hire from the time of delivery until redelivery.
  4. Except from these, failure to carry out a sweep-up of cargo debris, even when loading the same type of cargo, could hide fresh damage which may also lead to a claim.
  5. Remaining residues may not only damage the next cargo, but also affect the painted surfaces and increase corrosion, posing an additional threat for the hull along the sea water.

It becomes understood that a thorough cargo hold cleaning is vital for the whole transport operation to run smoothly. This is why personnel onboard and onshore, involved in cargo holds preparation and in fixing vessels respectively, should be familiar with the whole range of issues surrounding the cleaning of holds.

Tips for proper cargo hold cleaning

  • Prior to commencing the operation, a risk assessment and a tool box talk should be carried out, to identify potential risk areas for everyone involved.
  • Cargo residues contained in hold wash water should be disposed in line with MARPOL Annex V or any local requirements.
  • There should be sufficient fresh water to enable a final thorough fresh water rinse of all holds to remove all traces of chlorides.
  • Typical water washing should be conducted from the top down, commencing with the hatchcovers and coamings, moving on to the underdeck area, then the bulkheads and finishing with the bilges.
  • Chemical cleaning should be conducted from bottom to top, commencing with the bilges, with the underdeck area, hatchcovers and coamings washed last, to prevent residues from streaking on the vertical surfaces.
  • In cases where holds are to be cleaned while cargo remains onboard in other holds, extra vigilance is needed regarding the ingress of wash water into holds containing cargo via the cargo hold bilge system.
  • Crew should check that cleaning chemicals are compatible with the paint system and the next cargo to be loaded.
  • Holds and bilge wells should be completely dry prior to loading the next cargo.
  • If there is a delay between completion of cleaning and loading, holds should be regularly checked for ship sweat.
  • Upon completion of the cleaning, all the holds should be inspected by a responsible officer before arrival of the shipper’s hold surveyor.

Leave a Reply

SSCP   CAS-002   9L0-066   350-050   642-999   220-801   74-678   642-732   400-051   ICGB   c2010-652   70-413   101-400   220-902   350-080   210-260   70-246   1Z0-144   3002   AWS-SYSOPS   70-347   PEGACPBA71V1   220-901   70-534   LX0-104   070-461   HP0-S42   1Z0-061   000-105   70-486   70-177   N10-006   500-260   640-692   70-980   CISM   VCP550   70-532   200-101   000-080   PR000041   2V0-621   70-411   352-001   70-480   70-461   ICBB   000-089   70-410   350-029   1Z0-060   2V0-620   210-065   70-463   70-483   CRISC   MB6-703   1z0-808   220-802   ITILFND   1Z0-804   LX0-103   MB2-704   210-060   101   200-310   640-911   200-120   EX300   300-209   1Z0-803   350-001   400-201   9L0-012   70-488   JN0-102   640-916   70-270   100-101   MB5-705   JK0-022   350-060   300-320   1z0-434   350-018   400-101   350-030   000-106   ADM-201   300-135   300-208   EX200   PMP   NSE4   1Z0-051   c2010-657   C_TFIN52_66   300-115   70-417   9A0-385   70-243   300-075   70-487   NS0-157   MB2-707   70-533   CAP   OG0-093   M70-101   300-070   102-400   JN0-360   SY0-401   000-017   300-206   CCA-500   70-412   2V0-621D   70-178   810-403   70-462   OG0-091   1V0-601   200-355   000-104   700-501   70-346   CISSP   300-101   1Y0-201   200-125  , 200-125  , 100-105  , 100-105  , CISM   NS0-157   350-018  , NS0-157   ICBB  , N10-006 test  , 350-050   70-534   70-178   220-802   102-400   000-106   70-411  , 400-101   100-101  , NS0-157   1Z0-803   200-125  , 210-060   400-201   350-050   C_TFIN52_66  , JN0-102  , 200-355   JN0-360   70-411   350-018  , 70-412   350-030   640-916   000-105   100-105  , 70-270  , 70-462   300-070  , 300-070   642-999   101-400   PR000041   200-101  , 350-030   300-070  , 70-270  , 400-051   200-120   70-178   9L0-012   70-487   LX0-103   100-105  ,