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SURVEY & CERTIFICATION

Head Office: Prat 814, Office 311, Valparaiso / Phone: (56-32) 2545500 - Fax: 2254579
E-mail: valapraiso@marss.cl
Web Site: www.marss.cl
Member of Marss International
Arica - Iquique - Antofagasta - Coquimbo - Valparaso - San Antonio - Talcahuano - Puerto Montt
Punta Arenas

REPORT
SUBJECT

ANF-1402-0070
Loading of copper concentrates

PLACE
DATE

ESPERANZA TERMINAL
February 25, 2014.

To the Master of
MV JULY M
Dear Master,
With respect to the cargo consisting of copper concentrate, we may advise:
Metal sulphide concentrates, which include this cargo, are shipped in the form of a finelydivided cohesive sand-like material with significant inherent moisture content. These
cargoes are very dense, with a typical stowage factor between 0.3 and 0.6 m3/MT.
The properties and associated hazards are different for every mining location, even for
cargoes with the same description, and it is therefore essential to obtain comprehensive
certification from shippers, as discussed below.
The most important aspect to be considered during ocean carriage is that these cargoes
may spontaneously liquefy during the voyage if they are loaded with excessive inherent
moisture content. If such liquefaction occurs, the cargo behaves like a very dense liquid
and the stability of the carrying vessel is severely compromised through the resulting freesurface effect.
In order to reduce the risk of liquefaction, the IMO Bulk Code has implemented a system of
pre-shipment testing and certification for these cargoes (an incomplete list of such cargoes
forms Appendix A of the IMSBC Code). We strongly recommend that you should read the
full text of Sections 4, 7 and 8 of the IMSBC Code prior to loading.
The critical moisture content above which there is a danger of liquefaction, the so-called
Flow Moisture Point (FMP), can be determined in a laboratory. The main aim of the IMO
recommendations is to ensure that the cargo to be loaded has an average moisture content
that is below the so-called Transportable Moisture Limit (TML) of the cargo. The TML is
always 0.9 times the FMP, the difference being intended as a safety margin. For example, if
the FMP has been determined to be 10%, then the cargo lo be loaded must have an
average moisture content of below the corresponding TML of 9%.
We summarise the IMSBC Code recommendations below:
Certificates to be issued by Shippers
According to the IMO recommendations, certificates documenting the following parameters
should be issued by shippers. Loading should not be allowed to commence until the
certificates have been received by the Master. Cargoes that are of a dry and granular
appearance may still have an excessive moisture content and therefore a visual inspection
cannot under any circumstances replace the need for appropriate certificates to be issued
by shippers.

Page 1 of 3

Edition 01/07

SURVEY & CERTIFICATION


Head Office: Prat 814, Office 311, Valparaiso / Phone: (56-32) 2545500 - Fax: 2254579
E-mail: valapraiso@marss.cl
Web Site: www.marss.cl
Member of Marss International
Arica - Iquique - Antofagasta - Coquimbo - Valparaso - San Antonio - Talcahuano - Puerto Montt
Punta Arenas

Transportable Moisture Limit (TML): Shippers should certify the TML of the
material to be loaded. Ideally, this certification should be supported by a copy of
an actual laboratory test certificate, giving measured values of FMP and/or the
TML calculated from it. The certificate of test should be less than six months old
and shippers must not have altered their production procedures or the product
composition since the test date.

Actual moisture content of the cargo to be loaded: Shippers should sample


the actual cargo to be loaded as near as possible to the time of loading and
certify the average moisture content of these samples. The delay between
sampling and loading should not be longer than seven days. It is not sufficient
for shippers to give a typical moisture content for previous cargoes; sampling
needs to be carried out on the actual cargo to be loaded. The Master should not
allow loading to commence unless the certified moisture content is less than the
certified TML.

Statement regarding chemical hazards: Some concentrate cargoes, including


copper concentrate from some mining locations, present additional hazards of
chemical self-heating, with the possibility of the emission of toxic gases, and/or
of corrosion of adjacent steel structures (see the Metal Sulphide Concentrates
entry in Appendix B of the IMSBC Code). Although this is not the case of Chilean
copper concentrate, shippers should state whether or not the specific cargo to
be loaded is known to be prone to spontaneous heating or oxidation or cause
corrosion of steel structures.

Please note that there are specialised ore carriers and other vessels that are specifically
designed and approved for the carriage of ore cargoes regardless of their moisture content
and the above does not apply to such vessels.
Advice to the Master during loading
The Master should be alert to the following:

If the cargo presented for loading is of muddy appearance, has water puddles
standing on it or has water running out of the base of a stockpile, the Master or the
attending Marss surveyor should carry out the ad-hoc test described on page 39, by.
8.3, of the IMSBC Code (the so-called can test) If that test shows free moisture or
a fluid behaviour of the sample, we recommend that joint sampling and joint
laboratory tests to verify the certified moisture content and TML of the material
should be arranged with shippers.

In the past, it has occasionally been proposed by shippers that two different types of
concentrate cargoes should be loaded into the same hold with a wooden divider or
similar separation. We do not recommend such stowage arrangements.
Furthermore, any general cargo stowed above or next to a consignment of
concentrates in the same cargo hold should not contain liquids (e.g. drums of liquid
chemicals or similar).

Page 2 of 3

Edition 01/07

SURVEY & CERTIFICATION


Head Office: Prat 814, Office 311, Valparaiso / Phone: (56-32) 2545500 - Fax: 2254579
E-mail: valapraiso@marss.cl
Web Site: www.marss.cl
Member of Marss International
Arica - Iquique - Antofagasta - Coquimbo - Valparaso - San Antonio - Talcahuano - Puerto Montt
Punta Arenas

After completion of loading, the cargo surface should be trimmed as levelled as


practicable. Some concentrate cargoes have developed dangerous wet bases when
trimmed insufficiently level.

The Master should notify Owners and/or the Club if water puddles appear on the
cargo surface or boundaries or if significant amounts of water drain from the cargo
into the bilges at any time during the voyage.

We hope the above meets your present requirements. Although the potential hazards
associated with this type of cargo and the scope of the IMO recommendations may seem
daunting, we would like to emphasise that large volumes of these cargoes are carried
regularly and safely without incident and that there is no reason to expect any difficulties, as
long as shippers and the Master comply closely with the IMO requirements.

Kind regards

MARSS Surveyor

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Edition 01/07