A point beyond the mid-point of a ship’s length, toward the stern relative to an object or point of reference (‘abaft the fore hatch’).
An action wherein a shipper/consignee seeks authority to abandon all or parts of their cargo.
Abatement is a discount allowed for damage or overcharge in the payment of a bill.
Referring to cargo being put, or laden, onto a means of transport. (On or in a vessel).
The hull section of a vessel above waterline, the visible part of a ship.
To indicate the absence of a commanding officer, admiral, his chief of staff, or officer whose flag is flying (division, squadron, or flotilla commander), a special pennant is flown, called an absentee pennant.
Acceptance of Goods
The process of receiving a consignment from a consignor, usually against the issue of a receipt. As from this moment the carrier bears responsibility for the consignment.
A carrier’s charge for accessorial services such as loading, unloading, pick-up, and delivery, or any other charge deemed appropriate.
Certification by a recognized body of the facilities, capability, objectivity, competence, and integrity of an agency, service, operational group, or individual to provide the specific service or operation needed.
For example, the Registrar Accreditation Board accredits those organizations that register companies to the ISO 9000 Series Standards.
When a Bill of Lading is accepted or signed by a shipper or shipper’s agent without protest, the shipper is said to acquiesce to the terms, giving a silent form of consent.
Act of God
Also known as ‘force majeure’. Accidents of a nature beyond human control such as flood, lightning or hurricane.
Act of Man
In water transportation, the deliberate sacrifice of cargo to make the vessel safe for the remaining cargo. Those sharing in the spared cargo proportionately cover the loss.
Goods in active pick locations and ready for order filling.
Latin for “according to the value.”(1) An ad valorem duty is an import duty based on the value of an article as defined in the customs law of a particular country, rather than on value of an article as defined in the customs law of a particular country, rather than on weight or volume.
A percentage of that value is charged, for example, 5% ad valorem. (2) A freight rate set at a certain percentage of the value of an article is known as an ad valorem rate.
Any discrepancy between the actual shipment and what is stated on the bill of lading. These can result in additional charges from freight carriers.
The confirmed or official dimensions of a ship.
This is a senior naval officer of Flag rank. In ascending order of seniority: Rear Admiral, Vice Admiral, Admiral and Admiral of the Fleet
(Royal Navy). The term derives from the Arabic, Amir al-Bahr (ruler of the sea).
A court having jurisdiction over maritime questions pertaining to ocean transport, including contracts, charters, collisions, and cargo damages.
A high naval authority in charge of a state’s Navy or a major territorial component. In the Royal Navy (UK) the Board of Admiralty, executing the office of the Lord High Admiral, promulgates Naval law in the form of Queen’s (or King’s) Regulations and Admiralty Instructions.
A court which has jurisdiction over maritime questions pertaining to ocean transport, including contracts, charters, collisions, and cargo damages.
Also referred to as maritime law. Admiralty law is a distinct body of law which governs maritime questions and offences. It is a body of both domestic law governing maritime activities, and private international law governing the relationships between private entities which operate vessels on the oceans. It deals with matters including marine commerce, marine navigation, shipping, sailors, and the transportation of passengers and goods by sea. Admiralty law also covers many commercial activities, although land-based or occurring wholly on land, that are maritime in character.
Shipment of goods on shipper’s own account. A bill of adventure is a document signed by the master of the ship that carries goods at the owner’s risk.
The condition of a vessel which is floating freely (not aground or sunk). This is a term more generally used to describe vessels in service e.g. ‘the company has 10 ships afloat’.
A person who transacts business on behalf of another person or company with full or limited decision-making authority.
Numerous shipments from different shippers to one consignee that are consolidated and treated as a single consignment.
a Vessel resting on or touching the ground or bottom of a waterway.
When the boat is lying broadside to the sea. Also to ride out a storm with no sails and helm held to leeward.
Aid to Navigation (ATON)
Any device external to a vessel or aircraft specifically intended to assist navigators in determining their position or safe course, or to warn them of dangers or obstructions to navigation.
A term used when the transportation is completely by water.
An insurance provision that all loss or damage to goods is insured except any that is self-caused.
A clause included in marine insurance policies to cover loss and damage from external causes, such as fire, collision, pilferage, etc. but not against innate flaws in the goods, such as decay, germination, nor against faulty packaging, improper packing/ loading or loss of market, nor against war, strikes, riots and civil commotions. For more information see Marine Cargo Insurance.
A collision between a moving vessel and a stationary object.
A share of the capacity of a means of transport assigned to a certain party, e.g. a carrier or an agent, for the purpose of the booking of cargo for a specific voyage.
The point above the ship’s uppermost solid structure; overhead or high above.
By the side of a ship or pier. A phrase referring to the side of a ship. Goods delivered ‘alongside’ are to be placed on the dock or barge within reach of the transport ship’s tackle so that they can be loaded.
Always Within Institute Warranties Limits (A.W.W.L.)
The temperature of a surrounding body. The ambient temperature of a container is the atmospheric temperature to which it is exposed.
In the middle portion of a ship, along the line of the keel.
An object designed to prevent or slow the drift of a ship, attached to the ship by a line or chain; typically, a metal, hook-like or plough-like object designed to grip the bottom under the body of water.
A round black shape hoisted in the forepart of a vessel to show that it is anchored.
A small buoy secured by a light line to the anchor, designed to indicate the position of the anchor on the sea bed.
Anchor Chain or Anchor Cable
The chain connecting the ship to the anchor.
A team of men who handle ground tackle when the ship is anchoring or getting underway.
White light displayed by a ship at anchor. Two such lights are displayed by a ship over 150 feet (46 m) in length.
The anchor line, rope or cable connecting the anchor chain to the vessel.
A consignment of crew tasked with ensuring that the anchor is holding and the vessel is not drifting. It is very important during rough weather and at night. Most marine GPS units boast Anchor Watch alarm capabilities.
A suitable place for a ship to anchor; usually an area of a port or harbor.
Any Time, Day or Night, Sundays & Holidays Included (A.T.D.N.S.H.I.N.C.)
A chartering term referring to when a vessel will work.
Usually refers to a rating that applies to an article regardless of weight.
Apparent Good Order
When freight appears to be free of damage; so far as a general survey can determine.
The combination of the true wind and the headwind caused by the boat’s forward motion. For example, it causes a light side wind to appear to come from well ahead of the beam.
The process of referring to an agreed person for judgment on issues of a dispute; without requiring the use of courts.
Arc of Visibility
The portion of the horizon over which a lighted aid to navigation is visible from seaward.
A ship’s weapons.
The procedure whereby, in common law jurisdictions, a ship (and sometimes cargo and/or freight) may be seized by an admiralty court at the institution of or during an action ‘in rem’ – against a thing rather than a person – (infra) to provide pre-judgment security for the plaintiff’s maritime claim.
The date on which goods or a means of transport is due to arrive at the delivery site of the transport.
A vessel that is on the beach, shore or land.
A harbor used to provide shelter from a storm.
Actual time of arrival.
Actual time of departure.
A common marine insurance term. An early meaning (c.1500) of the word average is ‘damage sustained at sea’. The root is found in Arabic as aware, in Italian as avaria and in French as avarie. Hence an average adjuster is a person who assesses an insurable loss. Marine damage is either particular average, which is borne only by the owner of the damaged property, or general average, where the owner can claim a proportional contribution from all the parties to the marine venture. The type of calculations used in adjusting general average gave rise to the use of ‘average’ to mean ‘arithmetic mean’.
A measure of weight or mass equal to 0.4535924277 kilograms.
A vessel that is so low in the water that the water is constantly washing across the surface.
The position of an anchor just clear of the bottom.
Each freight shipping transport has a weight limit. The axle load refers to the weight limit permitted for each axle over the nation’s highways.
An instrument used to take bearings of celestial objects.
An instrument employed for ascertaining the position of the sun with respect to magnetic north. The azimuth of an object is its bearing from the observer measured as an angle clockwise from true north.