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Are you ready for the new “SOLAS” regulations coming in to effect on 1st July? If you’re reading this with a puzzled expression on your face and fear in your heart, don’t worry. It’s fine! This article will explain everything you need to know about “SOLAS” and the upcoming changes. First things first though, “What is SOLAS?”


“SOLAS” stands for the “Safety Of Life At Sea” and the convention first came in to effect in 1914 as a response to the Titanic disaster a few years before. The main aim of the “SOLAS” convention is to act as an authority for maintain the minimum standards required within the construction, equipment and running of ships.


The new regulations mean that we will now require various information from full container load shippers, in order to inform vessel operators of the Verified Gross Mass of the container.  The required information is listed below:


  1. Your details
  2. Container number
  3. Name of authorised signatory
  4. Verified Gross Mass (VGM) per container
  5. Method of weighing
  6. Additional information and/or documents


Given that the carrier will need the information in advance in order to create the vessel stow plan, it is best to provide all information as soon as possible, no later than 24 hours prior to cut-off. Failure to provide an accurate “VGM” in time will not only delay your shipments but could also see you facing additional charges. Although the shipper is responsible for the overall accuracy of the declared “VGM”, they can choose to nominate a 3rd party like Espace to provide the “VGM” on their behalf.  If you choose to sort all this yourself be sure to send over the “VGM” as soon as possible after container loading is complete.


We recommend that you familiarise yourself with the new “SOLAS” regulations and contact your vendors in order to find out how they plan to comply with the new regulations. Please get in touch with any queries or concerns you may have and a member of the Espace Team will be more than happy to help you.


Tony & The Espace Team



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