Voyage Charters

Page 401

Chapter 14

Loading and Discharging

5. Loading discharging costs 56
  *(b) Gross Terms 57
  [see paras 14.9 et seq. below for Gross Terms provisions of charter]  
  *(b) F.i.o. and free stowed trimmed 68
  [see paras 14.35 et seq. below for f.i.o.s.t. provisions of charter]  
  *indicate alternative (a) or (b), as agreed, in Box 15 78

General background

14.1 In the absence of provision to the contrary in the charterparty, the part which the owner and charterer must each play in the loading and discharging operation is determined by the custom of the port at which the operation is performed. If there is no custom of the port to the contrary it is the obligation of the charterer, upon loading, to deliver the cargo to the owner at the ship’s rail, where the owner must receive the cargo, take it into the holds and stow it. At the port of discharge, the responsibility for the goods is again transferred from the owner to the charterer at the ship’s rail, the obligation of the owner being to lift the goods from the hold to the ship’s rail, where the charterer is obliged to receive them. In Harris v. Best,1 Lord Esher described the rule as follows:

Loading is a joint act of the shipper or charterer and of the shipowner; neither of them is to do it alone, but it is to be the joint act of both. What is the obligation on each of them in that matter? Each is to do his own part of the work, and to do whatever is reasonable to enable the other to do his part. This puts upon the shipper the obligation of bringing the cargo alongside the ship, and of doing a certain part of the loading. What is that part of the loading? By universal practice the shipper has to bring the cargo alongside so as to enable the shipowner to load the ship within the time stipulated by the charterparty, and to lift that cargo to the rail of the ship. It is then the duty of the shipowner to be ready to take such cargo on board and to stow it in the vessel. The stowage of the cargo is the sole act of the shipowner.

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