524. Marida Ltd and others v Oswal Steel and others (the “Bijela”) [1992] 1 Lloyds Rep 636; [1993] 1 Lloyds Rep 411; [1994] 2 Lloyds Rep 1

General average – cost of temporary repairs allowed under Rule XIV of the York Antwerp Rules, 1974.

The Facts

The vessel, carrying scrap iron from Providence, Rhode Island, bound for Kandla, India, touched bottom and suffered heavy damage to her double bottom tanks just out of Providence.

She put in to port at Jamestown and could not proceed on her voyage without repairs.

There were two alternatives: she could discharge part of her cargo into barges, then return to Providence to discharge the rest of her cargo and then proceed to New York for permanent repairs. Or, she could undergo temporary repairs at Jamestown and proceed on the voyage to Kandla.

Rule XIV of the 1974 York Antwerp Rules read:

“Where temporary repairs are effected to a ship at a port of loading, call or refuge, for the common safety, or of damage caused by general average sacrifice, the cost of such repairs shall be admitted as general average.

Where temporary repairs of accidental damage are effected in order to enable the adventure to be completed, the cost of such repairs shall be admitted as general average without regard to the saving, if any, to other interests, but only up to the saving of expense which would have been incurred and allowed in general average if such repairs had not been effected there.

No deductions “new for old” shall be made from the costs of temporary repairs allowable as general average:

Rule X (b) read as follows:

The cost of handling on board or discharging cargo, fuel or stores whether at port or place of loading, call or refuge, shall be admitted as general average, when the handling or discharge was necessary for the common safety or to enable damage for the ship caused by sacrifice or accident to be repaired, if the repairs were necessary for the safe prosecution of the voyage, except in cases where the damage to the ship is discovered at a port or place of loading or call without any accident or other extraordinary circumstances connected with such damage having taken place during the voyage…”

In the event, the owners chose the temporary repairs option. The temporary repairs cost $ 282 606. The New York option would have cost $ 535 000, leaving out of the account the cost of permanent repairs.

Cargo interests disputed owners’ adjustment claiming the cost of temporary repairs under Rule XIV.

Findings

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