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ICHCA concludes 72nd Technical Panel meeting in Liverpool, 25 November 2014

ICHCA ISP Meeting

The International Cargo Handling Co-ordination Association (ICHCA) held the 72nd meeting of its ISP Technical Panel at the Port of Liverpool from 10-12 November 2014.

Hosted by Peel Ports at Liverpool's Maritime Centre, the meeting brought together experts and key players from across the cargo handling industry. ISP addressed technical and safety developments affecting ports and terminal operators.

Presentations were given throughout the two-day event by speakers from DP World Southampton, ETS Consulting, Conductix-Wampfler, Noatum Ports, Exis Technologies, Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MILT) and ICHCA.

James Douglas, Director of Exis Technologies spoke about the new Hazcheck Portal restrictions database for container lines, developed by Exis with the support of several major lines that already use its Hazcheck dangerous goods compliance systems. Exis is also the developer of the CTUpack e-learning course for those involved in loading and unloading containers, and took the container packing game for the attendees to play. Bill Brassington, ICHCA Deputy Chairman, won with the fastest time and was rewarded with a bottle of champagne.

Peter Terry, Safety and Security Manager of DP World Southampton, updated members on the use of a stability alarm monitoring system using data from the straddle carrier's PLC. By alerting drivers to stability issues, this has led to a large reduction in straddles toppling over and resulted in significant safety improvements.

Jorge Martín Díaz de Espada, Health, Safety, Security & Procurement Manager at Noatum Ports & Maritime spoke about the European "SEA TERMINALS" initiative. "SEA" in this case is an acronym for "Smart, Energy Efficient and Adaptive Port Terminals. Following on from the EU GREENCRANES project, the initiative, which brings together manufacturers and port operators, was established to research and promote the adoption of low carbon, energy efficient container port equipment, including LNG-powered and all-electric equipment, plus low energy lighting. The project, said Mr. de Espada, "would cover a number of pilot trials for new equipment, coupled with a smart energy management system for ports."

Bill Brassington, Principal at ETS Consulting, also discussed risks posed by the eccentric loading of cargo units and how these are accentuated by the reported rise in average container gross mass. Mr. Brassington highlighted research by ETS Consulting to back up his concerns and confirmed its commitment to highlighting this issue to the industry along with new legislation on container weight verification and the CTU Packing Code.

On a related topic, Beat Zwygart, Manager of LASSTEC Container Weighing Systems at Conductix-Wampfler, discussed container weighing technology in terminals based on his recent travels to port facilities around the world.

ISP's Chair, Jan Boermans of DP World, Deputy Chair, Bill Brassington and ICHCA's Technical Director, Captain Richard Brough O.B.E. led breakout work groups and roundtables sessions on critical safety issues in ports including container weight verification, fatigue in dock work and incidents with straddle carriers.

ICHCA will be co-ordinating a series of educational activities as part of its 'Pack It In!' campaign to raise awareness of IMO's new CTU Code and address issues around container weight verification. On 10 December ICHCA will be hosting a 'Container Lashing and Securing' Seminar in Rotterdam. The practical event will address the dangers posed by the inadequate lashing and securing of cargo, the onset of ever larger container vessels and the resulting increase in container movements.