Container accidents: Expert calls for implementation of IMO safety code

The secretary, Port Facility Security Officers of Nigeria (PFSON), Mr Ignatius Uche, on Thursday, urged terminal officials to implement the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) code to avoid container accidents.

Uche made the plea in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), against the backdrop of a container which fell on Wednesday, along Mile 2- Badagry Expressway and claimed five lives.

He said that such an accident could be avoided if the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) code, known as the ISPS Code “is appropriately implemented’’.

NAN reportedthat the ISPS code, an amendment to the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention (1974/1988) on minimum security arrangements for ships, ports and government agencies, came into force on July1, 2004.

Uche said that terminal owners should ensure that containers were properly lashed to the truck before leaving the terminals.

He said that the recurring incident of containers derailing from moving trucks had got to a stage where all stakeholders should be involved in curbing the menace.

“We cannot continue to lose lives because of the carelessness of some people.

“Every terminal has traffic officers. It is the duty of the traffic managers to ensure that such officers check the vehicles to ensure that all is well before the vehicles leave the terminals.

“They should be made to be proactive in the discharge of their functions to avoid causing havoc on the roads,’’ Uche told NAN.

According to him, most traffic officers focus attention on the stipends they collect as gate pass from the drivers and forget the security code.

He said that the IMO code covered the condition of trucks, adding that “If the standard security measures are put in place and adhered to religiously, most of the life-threatening incidents will be avoided,’’ he said.