Phase 8 - Notification of Refrigerated Cargo Damage
Guidance and information on the procedures to be followed once cargo damage is noticed.
After final delivery has taken place and the cargo has been de-vanned from the refrigerated container, the consignee should immediately notify their marine cargo insurers and/or the shipping line if any substantive condition or quality defects have been noted such as decay, thawing, freeze damage, over ripening, bruising, off-size and/or discoloration.
Marine cargo insurers should contact the shipping line and invite them to participate in a joint survey as soon as possible. Timely surveys are essential to establish the condition of perishables at the time of delivery to the consignee. Moreover, timely surveys are critical given that perishables continue to naturally deteriorate over time. As a general rule, a survey of perishable items should ideally be conducted within 24 hours of receipt.
If the cargo was not insured, the consignee should immediately notify the shipping line and advise the type of damage, the value and location of the cargo and the estimated amount of the loss. The consignee should also give the shipping line the opportunity to appoint a surveyor and to jointly inspect the cargo. The consignee should send a preliminary notification of the claim in writing to the shipping line within 3 days of delivery.
After the cargo has been surveyed and depending on the surveyors findings, the surveyor can recommend that the cargo is quickly placed on the market and sold at a discount to mitigate the loss, send samples to a lab for analysis, sold for salvage or if the cargo is considered a total loss, destroyed.
As mentioned in Phase 7 the container should be taken out of service for a post-trip inspection and the cargo should not be moved until the shipping lines surveyor has attended and inspected both the refrigerated container and cargo.
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