General Average declared following ZIM Charleston cargo fire


General Average has been declared by charterers after a ZIM boxship suffered a cargo fire off Colombo earlier this month.

ZIM CHARLESTON experienced a fire in cargo hold no. 4 whilst navigating off Colombo on 8 August 2022.

Insurance firm WK Webster updated shippers on 22 August, 2022, implementing the General Average law of all stakeholders sharing losses as a result of the fire.

It was reported that approximately 300 containers may have been affected by the fire, heat and smoke, and water damage arising from the subsequent firefighting operations.

The vessel is reported to have berthed at East Container Terminal, Colombo, where containers stowed on deck in the affected bays were discharged on 12 August 2022.

Further investigations are being made at Colombo to ascertain whether it is safe to discharge containers from the affected hold.

READ: Maersk to adopt new container firefighting system fleet-wide

“General Average security will be required from all Cargo Interests prior to the delivery of their cargo and we are likely to be able to assist in that regard,” WK Webster wrote in its latest update.

“We are currently in contact with Average Adjusters to ascertain the terms of the GA security to be provided.

“We also have fire experts on hand to investigate the cause(s) of the fire and we may be able to offer certain economies of scale in respect of such third party costs which may need to be incurred.”

In April a commercial Indian ship carrying commercial goods caught fire in the waters of the Port of Aden in Yemen’s Southern part.

Evergreen declared General Average for the stranded Ever Forward in Chesapeake Bay earlier this year.

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