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New SOLAS regulations - Verified Gross Mass (VGM)

April 28, 2016

Container Verified Gross Mass - VGM
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has adopted new regulations under the Safety of Life at Sea Convention (SOLAS) that require shippers to provide a verified weight for every packed container as a condition for vessel loading (MSC.1/Circ.1475). These new requirements become effective worldwide as from July 1st 2016.

The basics of the new requirements are:

  • A verified weight is a condition for loading a packed container onto a ship. The container will not be loaded onto the ship unless the shipper provides the VGM.
  • The master or his representative and the terminal representative must have obtained, in advance of vessel loading, the verified gross mass of the container from the shipper.
  • The shipper is responsible for providing the verified weight of the packed container.

Permissible Weighing Methods
The shipper may use one of two methods to determine the verified weight (VGM) of the packed container:

Method No. 1:

  • The shipper may weigh or have a third party weigh the packed, sealed container.

Method No. 2

  • The shipper may weigh or have a third party weigh all cargo items and all pallets, dunnage and other packing and securing material to be packed in the container, and add the tare mass of the container marked on the container to the sum of the masses of the container's contents.
  • Estimating the weight of the container's contents is not permitted.

Under either method 1 or method 2, the weighing equipment used must meet the accuracy standards of the country where the equipment is used. Also under either method, the declaration of the verified weight must be signed and dated by the shipper or by its duly authorized representative.

Our request to you
Transfennica Logistics is carrying containers on Your behalf and where subsequently, You are defined as shipper. You are therefore responsible for providing us with the verified container weight. It is important to create awareness of these changes within your company in order to prepare for the changes in time. We kindly request You to inform us on how You are preparing to meet these requirements entering into force 1st of July 2016.
If you have any questions regarding VGM, feel free to contact us. We try to answer and assist You the best we can.