Coastlines

Pollution: (Clause 38). Many states are becoming extremely conscious of pollution of their waterways and coastlines and merchant ship owners must ensure that their vessels comply with a host of international and national legislation in connection with this subject. Not only does this affect tankers. The cost of cleaning up and fines levied following pollution can be considerable, even if caused by, say, a dry-cargo ship’s ruptured bunker tanks. Contracts should therefore specify the rights and responsibilities of the parties, as well as listing the certificates that the contracted vessel is expected to carry. P & I Clubs usually provide insurance cover for entered vessels against oil spillages and resulting fines and clean-up expenses. Certain states, however, may insist that owners of all vessels calling at their ports (dry-cargo as well as tanker ships) provide evidence of financial responsibility for pollution liability in case of oil spillage – such evidence being usually in the form of a certificate of financial responsibility. Potential amounts demanded as security can be huge and entail the tying-up of immense sums of capital against relatively small risks of pollution. As a result, P & I Clubs do not encourage states to insist on their own, individual demands for security, instead providing dry-cargo owners with just the United States Federal Water Pollution Control Act Certificate. Further P & I Club assistance with certification to comply with any requirements of individual governments is not possible. Consequently, owners should not agree time charterparty clauses that provide for same. Salvage. (Clause 19). It seems fair that expenses and rewards in cases of salvage should be shared, and this is normal practice. Laying-up: (Clause 37). Unlike tanker time charterparties it is only rarely that dry-cargo owners and time charterers consider the risks of a vessel laying-up through lack of employment. For a trip charter this is, of course, not necessary, but for lengthy period employment, this attitude should be carefully reconsidered. What most dry-cargo time charterparties do include, however, is reference to what happens if a vessel is detained in port for periods in excess of 30 days.