Arrived Ship

There are three main obligations which must be fulfilled by the shipowner before the charterer is obliged to start loading the vessel and consequently, therefore, before laytime may commence. These obligations are: The ship must have arrived at the destination as stated in the charter. The ship must be ready and in a fit condition to receive the cargo. Notice of Readiness where necessary, must have been correctly tendered and received by the charterer. It is of great importance to ascertain when the ship is an arrived ship. The question is whether the ship has ‘arrived’ at the place where according to the terms of the charter party, it should load or discharge the cargo. This is, of course, important because laydays may only begin to run if the ship is an arrived ship, and it is only after the expiration of the laydays that the shipowner may claim demurrage from the charterer. Some charter parties state the port to which the ship should proceed – port charter parties. Other charter parties will state that the ship shall proceed to a specified and actual loading spot quay or berth in a port – berth charter parties. Where the charter provides that the ship shall proceed to a berth to be named by the charterer, the position is the same as if the named berth was actually specified in the charter party. Where the berth is named, the vessel must get into that berth before she can be said to be an arrived ship.  Note that this means the owners bear the risk of the berth being congested even if the congestion may, arguably, have been caused through the terminal operators inefficiency. Where the charter party names a dock as the loading area, the ship will be ‘arrived’ as soon as she gets into that dock, even though she cannot get to the berth immediately and must therefore wait before she can start loading. In the case of a port charter party, it is not always easy to determine whether the ship is an arrived ship. Sometimes a ship may have to wait at a customary place of anchorage until a berth becomes free and it can proceed thereto. If the customary place of anchorage is within the geographical, legal and administrative area of the port, and the ship is at the immediate and effective disposition of the charter, it is an arrived ship. This subject of arrived ship under a port charter party has been the subject of much judicial discussion.