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Steamship Lines impose fines on container misdeclaration

     Burning container ship

Be warned – ocean carriers are cracking down by imposing significant fines on shippers who fail to declare or misdeclare hazardous goods.  This action follows a series of vessel fires around the world and the growing concerns arising from undeclared and misdeclared hazardous cargo.

Evergreen Line was the first to announce the fines, ranging from $4,000 to $35,000 for misdeclarations.  Hapag-Lloyd, who suffered a high-profile fire aboard its vessel Yantian Express earlier this year due to misdeclared goods, will impose a $15,000 fine per misdeclared box, effective September 15, 2019.  OOCL announced enhanced inspection policies requiring additional verification prior to loading.

Carriers hold the shipper liable and responsible for all costs and consequences related to violations, fines, damages, incidents, claims and corrective measures resulting from cases of undeclared or misdeclared cargo.

Improperly or undeclared hazardous goods cause losses of millions of dollars’ worth of goods and steamship line assets, not to mention the negative impact on the environment and loss of life.

For more information, contact Debbie McGuire, Manager – Freight Solutions.

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