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Gard Guidance Masters CONCENTRATES

A. Concentrates are dangerous
Concentrates are particularly dangerous if loaded wet or if there is water ingress into the holds. Water ingress causes the cargo to shift which could lead to the vessel losing her stability and capsizing. Such cargoes should only be accepted for loading when the actual moisture content of the cargo is less than its transportable moisture limit (TML).

B. Precautions prior to loading concentrates
Prior to loading concentrates which may shift or liquefy, the Master should take the following precautions
  • carrying out a visual examination to assess the extent and duration of exposure to moisture during storage
  • obtaining and keeping properly labelled and sealed samples for possible testing later.

    Prior to the vessel’s arrival at the loading port, the Master should request from the shipper the following details about the cargo
  • flow moisture point (FMP)
  • TML
  • moisture content
  • angle of repose
  • any chemical hazards and details which may require additional safety precautions.

    If such information is not forthcoming in documented form, the Master should refuse to load the cargo and seek assistance from the Company.

    Further precautions to be considered by the Master prior to loading are
  • checking and verifying the shipper’s declarations
  • rejecting cargo with a moisture content above the TML
  • filling cargo spaces as much as practicable, within stability, stress and deck loading constraints
  • using longitudinal separation to limit the shifting distance of the cargo, the shift amount and forces involved
  • trimming the cargo so it is level and trimmed out to all sides of the compartment
  • not stowing other cargoes containing moisture in the same compartment
  • not loading during rain
  • ensuring that tanks adjacent to the compartment are empty
  • maintaining an adequate and approximate metacentric height to prevent excessive rolling
  • ensuring that bilges and wells are clean, empty and covered with burlap
  • obtaining weather routing information to avoid areas of adverse weather conditions during the passage.

    The Master is also advised to consult the relevant authorities in the ports of loading and discharge and the flag State administration to ascertain whether any stricter safety regulations apply than those internationally accepted.