SOLAS Container Freight Rules Take Effect July 1

Shipping ContainersAs widely reported in the trade media, and as Logistics Plus reported late last year, on July 1, 2016, a new regulation from SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea convention of the International Maritime Organization or IMO) takes effect requiring shippers whose name appears on the bill of lading to verify the gross mass of a container carrying cargo when tendering the container to the ocean carriers and terminals. Many in the industry are warning shippers to expect delays and congestion portside after the new rules go into effect.

We encourage Logistics Plus customers that ship containers to begin developing internal processes in anticipation of the new rules. This includes collecting accurate weights, developing a procedure for weighing containers, developing procedures for producing signed verified gross mass (VGM) certificates, understanding local requirements and determining who the authorized certificate signer will be while ensuring there is also a backup for this role. We also recommend having a contingency plan: if a container is denied access to a terminal or is quarantined on site, have alternatives planned to move time-sensitive cargo via air or some other method.

As always, your international shipping partners at Logistics Plus stand ready to help customers answer questions and address the new container rules as best as possible. The Journal of Commerce has published a helpful Shippers’ Guide to Container Weight Mandate article and FAQs on its website. Logistics Plus customers with specific questions or concerns should call their local Logistics Plus representative, or email us at

About Logistics Plus Inc.

Logistics Plus provides freight transportation, warehousing, global logistics, and supply chain management solutions through a worldwide network of talented and caring professionals. Founded in Erie, PA by local entrepreneur, Jim Berlin, 20 years ago, Logistics Plus has been repeatedly recognized as one of the fastest-growing transportation and logistics companies in the country. With a strong passion for excellence, its 350+ employees put the “Plus” in logistics by doing the big things properly, and the countless little things, that together ensure complete customer satisfaction and success.

The Logistics Plus® network includes offices located in Erie, PA; Alma, AR; Little Rock, AR; Los Angeles, CA; Riverside, CA; San Francisco, CA; Visalia, CA; Atlanta, GA; Evansville, IN; Detroit, MI; Kansas City, MO; Charlotte, NC; Lexington, NC; Buffalo, NY; Cleveland, OH; Charleston, SC; Greenville, SC; Nashville, TN; Dallas, TX; Fort Worth, TX; Houston, TX; Laredo, TX; Bahrain; Belgium; Canada; Chile; China; Colombia; Egypt; France; Germany; India; Indonesia; Kazakhstan; Libya; Mexico; Poland; Saudi Arabia; Turkey; and UAE; with additional agents around the world. For more information, visit or follow @LogisticsPlus on Twitter.