Shipping Law

Page 61


Proving Loss or Damage in Transit

Proving Loss or Damage in Transit

Page 62

Once a claimant has established title to sue its defendant in an English forum, it must next establish that the loss or damage complained of occurred during a period for which the defendant was responsible for the goods. At common law, the carrier’s period of responsibility under an ‘ocean’ bill of lading extends from the time at which the goods cross the ship’s rail on loading, to the time at which they cross it on discharge. This is known as the ‘tackle to tackle’ or ‘alongside’ rule. This period is frequently extended, either contractually or by custom of the port, to include the whole of the operations of loading and discharge. The period of responsibility will be the same whether the action is brought in contract, bailment or tort.

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