London P&I Club updates holds and hatch covers guide

Hatch cover. Credit: Leonid Eremeychuk/Getty Images

The London P&I Club has published an updated version of their Guide on the safe operation and maintenance of ship holds and hatch covers. The new edition of the Guide covers safety issues, potential dangers, and the ‘Do’s and Don’ts’ for safe operation of holds and hatches, aiming to provide simple pointers for the safe operation and maintenance of the holds and hatch covers of ships carrying dry cargoes.

Proper safety procedures for hatch and hold operation are not only vital for crew safety, but also for cargo integrity and profitability. According to the London P&I Club, 33% of large cargo claims by value in dry bulk and general cargo vessels is caused by hatch cover leaks.

As such, in the guide safety of personnel and care of cargo are the prime considerations addressed, but efficiency, economy, and reputation are all taken into account. Ultimately, the Guide is designed to assist shipboard staff in identifying the right and wrong ways of working by highlighting correct practices and pointing out potential dangers, according to the London P&I Club.

For its successful use by both native and non-native English speaking crew and those with a very limited knowledge of English, the Guide offers simple-to-understand photographs, sketches, and simplified wording.

The full guide can be downloaded here.