With ongoing supply chain congestion and widespread delays in international container traffic, the annoying challenges of abandoned cargo will persist and likely increase. In its role as a risk prevention advisor to the industry, the TT Club has issued a StopLoss document to provide practical guidance on this issue to stakeholders along the supply chain.
The potentially catastrophic effects resulting from the deterioration of the cargo left behind cannot be disregarded as a distant risk. The considerable costs that arise from lying, holding back, storing and disposing of containers, however, arise regularly from loads that are no longer needed by the original recipient or recipient for various reasons and are simply dropped off at a port terminal or a transshipment facility. Increased security risks and violations of regulations are inevitably the result, as are significant demands on management and operational resources to resolve individual cases.
“For freight forwarders, NVOCs, logistics companies and of course container terminals, the extent of cargo abandonment has always been problematic,” commented Peregrine Storrs-Fox, Risk Management Director at TT. “However, the increase in container demand in recent months has exacerbated the capacity problems of container ships, congestion in ports and the resulting severe transit delays. These factors will do little to mitigate the practice of freight interests when the market for goods is lost or bankruptcy, simply giving up ownership of shipments. “
Those responsible for the removal and / or disposal of the goods and the return of the container to the appropriate carrier need guidance and the StopLoss publication from TT Task of the cargo: avoid the pitfalls was designed to deliver just that. It identifies “red flags” that freight forwarders, logistic companies and freight forwarders should consider – certain goods such as waste, scrap, materials for recycling and personal effects – previously unknown shippers, especially individuals and non-corporations. Once the cargo has been defined as abandoned, the StopLoss also outlines the role of enforcement agencies and the responsibilities of others involved in the supply chain.
“The main value of our guidelines is to reduce the risks associated with the task and to outline recommendations for action in methodical steps and a ten-point checklist”, concludes Storrs-Fox. “There needs to be a better understanding of why cargo is being abandoned and how it is handled in order to limit the growth of a serious trend that leads to greater safety and cost implications.”