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CHR in sodium chlorate move

CH Robinson secured containers for a Canadian customer in urgent need to transport sodium chlorate: a commodity that their mine in Australia was running out of.

The customer had booked a bulk charter ship for another commodity in three of the four holds, so they approached the ship owner and arranged to book the remaining hold for sodium chlorate stored in 61 x 20′ SOC containers.

The C.H. Robinson team supported the purchase of the 20′ containers in Canada for the supplier to load. Due to the nature of the commodity and safety concerns, the supplier had a lot of restrictions and only allowed certain carriers onsite, so the supplier’s regular carrier arranged collection and delivery to the supplier’s facility. The supplier loaded the containers and their carrier had them delivered to the terminal.

The charter vessel was originally booked as ‘Free In’ which meant the customer would be responsible for procuring all securing/lashing equipment, welding in the hold, hiring stevedores, terminal selection, etc.

C.H. Robinson worked to get the terms changed to ‘Liner Terms’ so these responsibilities and the subsequent liability would shift to the vessel owner and their agent. C.H. Robinson supported the customer in making these arrangements and communicating with the ship owner and their local agent until the terms were changed.

Once the terminal and stevedores were selected and the charter terms aligned, C.H. Robinson had the containers released to the customer’s supplier who started delivering the containers to the terminal. Right away, the terminal contacted the carrier and asked them to stop delivering until they could get approval from CBSA to handle this commodity as it was Dangerous Goods (DG).

While C.H. Robinson was conversing with the terminal and stevedores, the DG status was brought up and was believed to be settled, however, there had been a past issue at the terminal and they were uneasy about dealing with this commodity. This caused delays in delivering the containers, which led to an extremely tight window to have all containers delivered before the vessel needed to sail to the next terminal to load the bulk cargo.

Timing was of the essence as the commodity could only be produced as containers became available to load, as the cargo had to be loaded direct to the container and kept out of the elements.