CargoSmart Introduces Mobile App for SOLAS VGM Compliance
CargoSmart Limited has introduced BoxSnap, a free app to collect and share container weight information through a smartphone. The app simplifies compliance with the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention’s Verified Gross Mass requirements (VGM).
The mobile app simplifies and expedites the process for shippers, truckers and cargo weighing parties to obtain VGM information and submit it to their ocean carriers to comply and minimize the risk of held cargo or penalties. Leveraging optical character recognition (OCR) technology, truckers and cargo weighing parties can take a photo of a container, check the captured container number and tare weight, and share it with the parties responsible for filing the VGM.
The International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) updated container weight rules went into effect on July 1, 2016. Shippers may face delays and fines if they do not submit the VGM according to carriers’ deadlines starting on October 1.
Nearly 500 people have downloaded BoxSnap since CargoSmart began testing the app in June. Naouri Group, a Jordan-based NVOCC with container weighing services in the Middle East and North Africa, adopted CargoSmart’s VGM solutions to comply with the new regulation. “We have tested the new mobile app and find it to be a useful extension to CargoSmart’s platform to facilitate the VGM submission process,” said Kareem Naouri, chief operations officer of Naouri.
BoxSnap allows shippers to receive container weight information as soon as it is available, either when a container is packed at a warehouse or is at a weighing station, to meet critical VGM submission deadlines. Shippers, truckers, and cargo weighing parties can save time from having to search through carriers’ websites for container tare weights, conveniently share scanned container information, and retain digital image records for future reference. Shippers who submit VGMs through CargoSmart’s online platform can designate third-parties to provide the container weight details through the app and receive alerts when they can submit the VGM to their carriers.
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