Failing to go cold turkey


  • Date: 22/03/2012

A ship agent, arranging for the export of a consignment of frozen turkeys, mistakenly notified the line’s reefer engineers that the cargo needed to be carried at a temperature of +13 deg. C. instead of -25 deg. C.. The mistake went unnoticed and the cargo was loaded onto the ship accordingly.

The discrepancy between the bill of lading and the actual temperature of the container was also not noticed during an inspection of the containers by the crew of the vessel, prior to sailing. It was also later alleged that the container temperature went unchecked for the entire voyage.

When it was discovered that the turkeys had been carried at the incorrect temperature, the carrier received a claim for the total loss of the cargo (USD 125,045). In turn, they claimed this amount from the ship agent.. In view of the contributory negligence by the ship’s crew, the claim was eventually settled with a contribution from the ship agent of USD 30,000.

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