There was a major rise in incorrectly declared dangerous goods last year, compared to 2014, according to German liner company Hapag-Lloyd.
Namely, the company’s Watchdog program identified 4,314 incorrectly declared dangerous goods cases last year, an increase of 65 percent on the previous year’s figure of 2,620 cases.
Hapag-Lloyd’s dangerous goods experts looked into more than 236,000 suspicious cases picked up by the safety software in 2015 (2014: more than 162,000) – that’s equivalent to an increase of approximately 46 percent, the company said.
Dangerous goods that are declared imprecisely, incorrectly or not at all have the potential to pose a major risk to crews, ships, other cargo and the environment.
For Ken Rohlmann, head of the dangerous goods department at Hapag-Lloyd, there are two reasons behind the sharp increase.
“Firstly, the volume of cargo shipped by Hapag-Lloyd increased considerably last year due to the company’s merger with CSAV’s container business. Secondly, there was a sharp rise in Watchdog findings following the devastating dangerous goods explosion in the port of Tianjin in mid-August”, says Rohlmann.
Many ports drastically tightened their dangerous goods guidelines in the wake of the incident or even prohibited dangerous goods from being processed at all.