November 11 -
TT Club constantly analyses the claims it receives and it has pinpointed a number of circumstances that lead to dangerous incidents resulting from human error. These incidents can result in bodily injury, sometimes death, and significant loss and damage to cargo, equipment and property.
At a meeting in Hong Kong between the members of the Japanese International Freight Forwarders Association (JIFFA), hosted by the Hong Kong Japanese Chamber of Commerce & Industry, the TT Club gave a presentation drawing attention to the impact of human error and delivering advice on how to improve safety in the supply chain.
"The picture is very clear, the overwhelming majority of claims, some 95 percent of those we've analysed had causation that involved the human factor including operational causes and those related to maintenance (or lack of it); the remainder being down to weather events," said TT Club's regional director Asia-Pacific, Phillip Emmanuel, who was giving the presentation.
The TT Club says it has, for some time, been emphasising the need for operators to take greater account of the human factor in risk mitigation programmes. Claims at ports, terminals and throughout the physical supply chain can be reduced by "establishing more robust training programmes for truck drivers and equipment operators as well as warehouse and terminal personnel, who are involved in cargo packing as well as container and truck movements", Emmanuel continued.
Training targeted at this sector would reduce incidents caused by bad handling and stowage, which makes up nearly a third of claims classed as 'systems and process issues', says the TT Club. 40 percent or more of these claims were caused by errors that might have been avoided if a more disciplined checking system was implemented, including clerical and contractual mistakes, incomplete Customs declarations, and the release of cargoes without correct documentation.
Furthermore, Emmanuel explained that good management should include the application of physical devices to improve safety and security. This extends beyond fencing and CCTV at terminals and warehouses to prevent theft to include anti-collision devices to avoid handling equipment accidents, and equipment maintenance using high quality spares to reduce the risk of fires.
The TT Club also highlighted the importance of detailed due diligence procedures when employing sub-contracts for transport services. "The phrase 'know your contractor' should be the guide for all transport operators seeking to protect themselves from the consequences of cargo theft", said Emmanuel, adding that TT Club's analysis shows that 66 percent of costs accruing from theft take place when carried by a sub-contractor or from a contractors premises.