Transit

In relation to carriage by land and sea, ‘transit’ at Common Law begins at the moment the goods are delivered to the carrier or his agent and the carrier accepts them. Transit does not mean movement and the goods can be in transit while being stored in a warehouse. Transit ceases when the goods are delivered to the consignee or when the goods are tendered to the consignee. In the case of containers discharged into a container yard on a port-to-port (CY/CY) bill of lading the goods are still technically in transit until picked up by the consignee or his agent. It is the duty of a carrier to deliver the goods to the consignee at a place to which they are directed. The master of the ship is not justified in delivering the goods to any person who does not produce the Bill of Lading in respect of the goods. A shipowner may be liable to the shipper for delivering goods without the production of the Bill of Lading. Only where there is a custom of the particular port, or express agreement in the contract of carriage, may the goods not be delivered to the consignee or his agents. Delivery at a wharf where there is no special custom of the port will not constitute proper delivery; and where goods are delivered short of their destination and cannot be obtained elsewhere the consignees will be entitled to recover the cost of transhipment from the owners by way of damages.