The UK M Notice MGN 552 (M) has been issued by the MCA on the safe Stowage and Securing of Specialised Vehicles. It is a useful source of advise for any seafarer involved in loading Ro Ro Cargoes. This post contains a summary of that notice for those revising for examinations. If you are involved in Ro Ro operations then follow the link to read the full notice.
The purpose of the Marine Guidance Note is to draw to the attention of industry, the potential hazards when carrying Specialised Vehicles.
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Ships should ensure that cargo is stowed and secured in accordance with the approved Cargo securing manual before the ship leaves a berth.
During the voyage, lashings should be inspected at intervals appropriate to the length of voyage and weather conditions expected to ensure that vehicles remain safely secured.
Lashings should not be released for unloading before the ship is secured at the berth, without the Master’s express permission.
Cargo should be so distributed that the ship has a metacentric height in excess of the required minimum and, whenever practicable, within an acceptable upper limit to minimise the forces acting on the cargo keeping in mind that large metacentric height could cause the ship to roll violently in adverse sea conditions.
Sudden change of course and or speed may create adverse forces acting on the ship and the cargo. This is especially relevant for vessels fitted with high lift rudders, where moderate to high rudder angles may result in high forces being generated.
The crew should be familiar with the requirements contained within the approved CSM.
Ships’ officers and managers should carry out checks on lashings during audits and inspections to ensure that bad practices are not taking place, especially where operations are rapid and very repetitive.
The condition of lashing systems should be monitored closely.
There should be an effective maintenance programme for all the portable and fixed securing devices. Web lashings are to be marked and limited to a maximum working
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