Prior to loading:
- A pre-stow plan should be made carefully after considering all the available information (w.r.t. to the hold dimensions, cargo gear limitations & cargo dimensions), to allow the maximum utilization of the available space; the better the under-deck stowage, the more cargo can safely be carried on deck.
- The cargo spaces and related equipment should be examined to check for damages & repairs effected in an appropriate manner.
- The bilge suction screens should be examined to ensure they are clean, effective and properly maintained to prevent the admission of debris into the bilge piping system.
- The bilge wells should be free of extraneous material such as wood bark and wood splinters.
- Side sparring, pipe guards, etc., designed to protect internal hull members should be in place.
- The Master should ensure that the opening and closing of any high ballast dump valves (TST o’board v/vs) are properly logged. The Master should ensure that the dump valves are properly monitored to preclude (prevent) the accidental readmission of water into these tanks. Leaving these tanks open to the sea, could lead to an apparently inexplicable list, a shift of deck cargo, and potential capsize.
During Loading Operations:
- Each lift of logs should be hoisted aboard the ship in close proximity to the ship to minimize any potential swinging of the lift.
- The possibility of damage to the ship and the safety of those who work in the cargo spaces should be considered. The logs should not be swinging when lowered into the space. The hatch coaming should be used, as necessary, to eliminate any swinging of the logs by gently resting the load against the inside of the coaming, or on it, prior to loading.
- The logs should be stowed compactly, thereby eliminating as many voids as is practicable. The heaviest logs should be loaded first into the cargo spaces.
- Logs should generally be stowed compactly in a fore and aft direction, any remaining void spaces should be filled with logs stowed athwartships so as to fill in the void across the breadth of the space as completely as the length of the logs permits.
- Athwartship voids should be filled tier by tier as loading progresses.
- Extreme pyramiding of logs should be avoided to the greatest extent possible.
- If the breadth of the space is greater than the breadth of the hatch opening, pyramiding may be avoided by sliding fore and aft loaded logs into the ends of the port and starboard space.
- This sliding of logs into the ends of the port and starboard side of the space should commence early in the loading process (after reaching a height of approximately 2 m above the inner bottom) and should continue throughout the loading process.
- A careful watch by ship’s personnel should be maintained throughout the loading to ensure no structural damage occurs. Any damage which affects the seaworthiness of the ship should be repaired.
- When the logs are stowed to a height of about 1 m below the forward or aft athwartship hatch coaming, the size of the lift of logs should be reduced to facilitate stowing of the remaining area and logs in the hatch coaming area should be stowed as compactly as possible to maximum capacity.
The ship should be thoroughly examined to ascertain its structural condition. Bilges should be sounded to verify the ship’s watertight integrity.
During the Voyage:
- The ship’s heeling angle and rolling period should be checked, in a seaway, on a regular basis. Wedges, wastes, hammers and portable pump, if provided, should be stored in an easily accessible place.
- The Master or a responsible officer should ensure that it is safe to enter an enclosed space by:
- Ensuring that the space has been thoroughly ventilated by natural or mechanical means, testing the atmosphere of the space at different levels for oxygen deficiency and harmful vapour where suitable instruments are available.
- Requiring self-contained breathing apparatus to be worn by all persons entering the space where there is any doubt as to the adequacy of ventilation or testing before entry.