The Hague/ Hague–Visby Rules – interpretation of Article III r 2, read with r 8 – shippers not obliged to undertake all the functions enumerated
Steel coils were shipped from Mumbai to Barcelona and Motril, Spain under Congen bills incorporating a voyage charterparty. The bills of lading contained a general paramount clause incorporating the Hague and the Hague–Visby Rules where applicable.
The charterparty contained a FIOST (free in and out stowed and trimmed) clause and a clause 17 which read as follows:
“17. Shippers / Charterers / Receivers to put the cargo on board, trim and discharge the cargo fee of expense to the vessel.”
Both the bills of lading and the charterparty were governed by English Law.
On outturn, the cargo was found to be damaged, cargo owners alleging negligence in loading, discharge and stowage.
The issue was whether the shippers, who had undertaken responsibility for these functions, or the owners, were liable for the alleged negligence.
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