South Korean ship builder Samsung Heavy Industries announced this week that it has developed a device to reduce the large-scale falling of containers into the sea.
The device, called Special Structure Anti-Container Loss (SSA-CL) secures the containers to the vessel, lowering the risk of many boxes falling into the sea due to severe weather conditions, such as high waves or gusty winds.
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is tightening regulations related to container
loading, in view of the fact that containers lost at sea, are navigational hazards and cause
During the 107th session of IMO’s Maritime Safety Committee in June, draft amendments to SOLAS chapter V (Safety of navigation) were approved, requiring the master of every ship involved in the loss of containers to report such incidents to ships in the vicinity, to the nearest coastal State, and also to the flag state which would be required to report the incident to IMO.
This issue was highlighted recently with the sinking of the Palau-flagged container ship Angel off Taiwan’s Kaohsiung port on 21 July, causing the loss of 600 containers. Those containers floated to other ports, creating hazards to marine traffic.
Samsung HI said that SSA-CL can be attached to the lashing bridge on container ships.
Experiments showed the device can reduce the container loss rate by up to 70% by more tightly restraining the left and right movement of the containers, even in inclement weather.
Samsung HI said that SSA-CL is designed to be compact and lightweight, making the device easy to install without affecting the container load. So far, SSA-CL has received approval from four classification societies, Det Norske Veritas, Lloyd’s Register, the American Bureau of Shipping and the Korean Register of Shipping.
Samsung HI said that will carry out prototype structural strength testing on SSA-CL at Pusan National University, and then begin marketing the product in earnest.
Lee Dong-yeon, head of Samsung HI’s Shipbuilding & Marine Research Institute, commented, “SSA-CL will be a solution that not only prevents damage to the property of ship owners and shippers due to container loss, but also minimises the risk of marine environmental pollution. We hope that SSA-CL can be recognised as an effort by ship owners to prevent cargo loss, and contribute to cost reductions such as lowering insurance premiums.”