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The Escalating Need to Urgently Address Box Stack Failures at Sea in 2021

Shipping is still the primary means of transportation of goods around the world, carrying billions of tons of materials and finished goods to where they are needed most.

However, these ships operate in an environment that is not only commercially demanding but also exposed to risks that have serious consequences . In spite of significant improvements in safety regulations, equipment, and technology, we continue to see accidents and mishaps at sea, caused by a multitude of reasons, that often result in these valuable containers of cargo going overboard.

Stop the Losses. It’s Time for AI-Optimized Container Stowage

The number of containers falling overboard, and hazardous cargo causing untold damage, results in millions of dollars of losses, insurance claims and immeasurable environmental damage.

The reasons for the failures are many, but larger vessels, disrupted sailing schedules, ports with maxed out capacity and human error are top of the list.

“It is time for the industry to change and to harness centralized stowage planning systems that ensure vessels operate at their maximum capacity,” said Vijay Minocha, Chief Commercial Officer of Solverminds Solutions. “These stowage systems powered by artificial intelligence (AI) include careful consideration of stack weight limits, visibility restrictions, stability limitations, hull stress and lashing forces, significantly increasing safety and mitigating the risk of lost containers”.

Artificial Intelligence, Real Safety

When it comes to protecting the lives of the crew and the well-being of the environment, safety is at the top of everyone’s agenda. Line haul operators can mitigate the risk with DG storage by using smart in-built hazard stow algorithms that generate automated plans for hazardous cargo within seconds and in compliance with the IMDG Code, vessel-specific limitations and in-house company policies.

The process that typically involved arduous manual
monitoring and validation by experts is now automated
through technology, with faster results.

“What takes overworked stowage planners hours to complete can be achieved quicker and more effectively in seconds using AI-enabled stowage planning algorithms,” said Minocha.

Disrupted sailing schedules, port congestion and labor shortages are compounding the problems that line-haul carriers are enduring, but a well-executed stowage operation is directly linked to reducing the time a vessel spends in port and a corresponding reduction in cost.

“Spending less time in port provides a buffer to plan optimal speeds for each leg of the  voyage, reducing bunker costs, and creating the opportunity to add one or more ports within the service rotation. Our optimiser solution also drives efficient terminal yard planning through automated forecasting and optimized crane splits,” added Minocha.

The busy of port congestion loading and discharging containers services in maritime transports in World wide logistics

Plan Ahead, Harness Expertise in Seconds

A simple upload of cargo forecasts produces optimal plans for multi-port voyages irrespective of service or cargo type. Using Sonata from Solverminds, the built-in algorithm embeds the expertise of highly skilled vessel planners and generates reliable stowage plans within a few seconds while considerably reducing manual planning time.

Speak to an informed consultant at Solverminds about our integrated cargo forecast planning platform – Sonata – that allows carriers to plan and formalize stowage through consolidated multi-format files. These include BAPLIE, Movins, Excel, COPRAR, and user-specific formats, and share container data with real-time visibility.