Precaution while carrying Iron ore


  • Iron ores are heavy cargoes which occupy a small area for a large weight, ie they have a low stowage factor. It is therefore important that the tanktop has sufficient strength to carry certain iron ore.
  • Trimming of these cargoes is generally required (even though their angle of repose is mostly above 35°) to spread their weight across the entire tanktop.
  • The stability of vessels ­as iron ore is a high density cargo, when loaded on an ordinary bulk carrier (not an ore carrier) it will increase the vessel's GM to make it a stiff ship.
  • Damage to hold and hold structures are common. Careful monitoring for the same should be carried out.Damage to paintwork and increased tendency to rust has also been noted  
  • Moisture content should not exceed the TML.It is imperative that the cargo moisture content is tested prior to and monitored during all stages of loading as, once onboard, cargo may be extremely difficult to remove.Splatter marks while loading is a good indication of moisture content.
  • In recent years an increase in incidents attributed to carrying iron ore filings with excessive moisture content, causing sloshing and adverse stability and in some cases the rapid loss of the ship.
  • Unless suitably strengthened, single side skinned bulkers should not load iron ore in alternate holds(req as per Solas Chapter Xll.
  • Hull stresses to be monitored in the loadicator when in port and at sea. 
  • Loading should not be commenced until the master is in possession of all requisite cargo information and documentation/certificates that a shipper is obliged to provide under the Code or local regulations and is satisfied that the cargo is safe to load and carry.

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