Freight News

Cargo alert system to stand alone

[ March 12, 2015   //   ]

The Cargo Incident Notification System (CINS ) founded in 2011 by CMA-CGM, Evergreen, Hapag Lloyd, Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Company is to set itself up as an independent organisation.

It said the new structure will allow more resources and greater focus on discovering the root cause of cargo related incidents and preventing them in the future.

There are now 12 participating shipping lines accounting for 61% of container slot capacity. CINS helps capture information on the causes of cargo and container incidents, though excluding any shipper data. The information gives an early warning of worrying trends of cargoes with dangerous characteristics or unsafe practices in the supply chain.

“CINS represents a unique co-operation between container lines to promote safety in the maritime supply chain” explains CINS chairman Uffe Ernst-Frederiksen, who is also head of cargo management at Maersk Line.

CINS has repeatedly identified cargo leakage as a major area of concern and the problems have been getting worse in the last year. Many of the incidents concern not liquids but bulk solid cargoes, often where the lining or packaging has been inappropriate. Unpackaged cargoes, such as hides and waste, have also been problematic.

“A common misconception about the CINS initiative is that it is concerned with classified dangerous goods alone,” says Ernst-Frederiksen. “But this could not be further from the truth.”

Almost 75% of the incidents recorded in the last two years were for generally ‘inert’ cargoes although the risks are even greater for flammable or corrosive material. This is a very real concern to the shipping lines, since one in five of the incidents involve cargoes classified in these ways.

Poor packing, which includes blocking and securing, was identified as a root cause in 50% of the incidents in 2014 – and combining this with mis-declaration and incorrect packing, increases the proportion to over 80%.

CINS is collaborating in compiling good practice guidance for packers of certain problematic cargoes, such as steel coils.