In view of the beginning new 'grain' season in Russia and the expected considerable export volume of grain cargoes this year there will be an increase of the vessel traffic in such areas as Port Kavkaz (STS operations of sea/ocean going vessels) and Kerch Strait (comparatively small river-sea going vessels calling ports of Rostov, Azov and Taganrog), cautions the Swedish Club.
There have been several recent issues with the vessels loading grain cargoes at Port Kavkaz anchorage and OPL Kavkaz (neutral waters of the Black Sea).
According to the Charter Party terms, the Master was to sign Bills of Lading with weight to be as per shipper's figures. In case of dispute over the actual loaded weight, the cargo quantity loaded was to be established by the shore figures, conclusive as to the loaded weight.
However, no official evidence of the shore figures was presented to Master during loading operations. On completion of loading the shipper's surveyors issued draft survey reports with quantities exceeding 200-400 MT the actual findings.
Despite the Charter Party terms, the shipper surveyor's draft survey report with the falsified calculation was used as evidence of the quantity of cargo loaded.
The recommendation is to clarify the term 'shore figure' from the very beginning and prevent attempts of the shipper's surveyor to amend the actual draft survey findings in favour of the shippers.