What are precautions while loading Heavy lift cargo?

Prior lifting

  • Check vessel’s stability.
  • Maximum possible loss of GM in the operation to be calculated.
  • Maximum possible list and trim during operation to be calculated.
  • Free surface effects to be considered.
  • All tanks should be pressed up or empty to avoid free surface effect.
  • Vessel to be even keel and upright as far as practicable.
  • Test the SWL of the lifting gear and associated equipments, it must be below the weight to be lifted.
  • Check load density of the hatch/deck area the load being loaded.
  • Load density must not exceed the value given in stability booklet.
  • Distribute load on deck using dunnage.
  • Unnecessary personnel removed.
  • Lashing arrangement is sufficient. Extra lashing points may be welded.

Rigging of heavy lift

  • All gears associated with lifting such as runners, guy pendants, tackles, blocks etc, to be examined carefully.
  • Lifting gears and associated equipments to be greased and renewed as necessary.
  • All other riggings cleared.
  • Rig wires, blocks etc as per rigging plan.
  • Rig Preventers and backstays as per the plan.
  • Topping lift in good condition and securely shackled (moused).
  • Winches should be in double gear.
  • Derrick unclamped from mast.
  • Rig extra stays if required
  • Once clamp removed, take weight on messenger and slowly lower the derrick.

When lifting

  • Ensure fore and aft moorings are taut and tended.
  • Use steadying lines (swing preventers).
  • Competent winchman.
  • Communication signals understood. Standard signals as per COSWP to be used.
  • Only one competent person to signal the whole operation.
  • Whole operation to be supervised by a responsible officer.
  • Raise gangway.
  • The derrick to be plumbed over the weight.
  • Take weight slowly.
    • Lift the load slowly, swing in the correct position and load on the appropriate position.
    • Control swing by steadying stays.
    • Consider emergency action if vessel develops heavy list (more than calculated) during the operation.
    • Take proper lashing, considering heavy weather on the voyage.


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