The purpose of this thesis is two-folded; (i) to describe what cargo safety rules and regulations are applicable for ro-ro vessels based on Norwegian legislation; and (ii) to make a normative case study on how Höegh Autoliners ensure compliance of the relevant applicable cargo safety rules and regulations.
Section 12 in the Ship Safety and Security Act concerns cargo safety. The Act applies for cargo vessels. A ro-ro vessel is a cargo vessel. Hence, requirements set forth in Section 12 apply for ro-ro vessels.
Section 12 consists of two paragraphs. First paragraph describes particularly two elements in a broad sense; (i) stability and buoyancy; and (ii) life, health, property or the environment, where the former point shall not be endangered and the latter point not be jeopardized. This paragraph also entails the handling of dangerous goods. This is due to the fact that life, health, property or the environment can be jeopardized by wrongful handling of dangerous goods. Furthermore, second sentence has delegated authority to NMD to issue detailed regulations concerning cargo and ballast. Second paragraph concerns cargo-handling operations. The term “cargo-handling operations” is specifically mentioned given the potential risk the cargo-handling operation represents. Second sentence has delegated authority to NMD to issue detailed regulations concerning cargo-handling operations.
There are mainly three requirements for a ro-ro vessel in order to be in compliance with Section 12; (i) safely loaded and ballasted; (ii) safe cargo-handling operations; and (iii) safe handling of dangerous goods.
Detailed requirements are set forth in Regulation 785/2006 concerning carriage of cargo and Regulation 1481/2009 concerning carriage of dangerous goods. These regulations have implemented the relevant international safety rules and regulations in two ways; (i) by verbatim in the respective regulations; and (ii) by reference to SOLAS, CSS Code and IMDG Code.
Höegh Autoliners ensures compliance with the cargo safety rules and regulations through its subsidiary HFS. HFS is considered as the company set forth in Section 4 in the Ship Safety and Security Act. HFS is consequently the responsible company according to cargo safety questions. However, the internal cargo safety rules (based on Norwegian law) are manifested and distributed internally through HACQM. HA is the document owner of HACQM given its cargo handling competence, experience and focus. This entails monitoring applicable cargo safety rules in order to have an updated HACQM. Hence, a close interaction and collaboration between HA and HFS on all cargo safety questions is imperative to ensure compliance of the applicable cargo safety rules. This is of particular importance given the described corporate structure of Höegh Autoliners.