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Maritime Glossary

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Shipboard handling activity

A marine handling company that insures the loading or unloading of ships.The English equivalent is Stevedore

Mooring a Ship Along the Wharf

Vessel Rental. The charter concerns the use and enjoyment of the ship by the charterer (the "charterer" makes the ship available to the charterer).

Shipping agent (shipping agent)
See consignee

Agreement reached between shipowners on the main shipping routes worldwide.

Operation of attaching the ship to the bollards of the wharf using ropes (mooring lines).

Fixed or floating platform allowing boats to dock or moor in ports, rivers or estuaries subject to tide.

Shipowner, shipping company
Natural or legal person who arms and operates the vessel as owner or lessee

Setting up the cargo on board the vessel to ensure the preservation of the cargo, the safety of the ship and the easy access to the ports of call. The Captain establishes a cargo plan indicating the location of the goods on board the vessel.

Large rope used for mooring ships.

Damage to the ship or its cargo.

Provisioning (shipchandler
Activity consisting in the supply of necessary fuel and food on board a vessel for the performance of a transport.


Set of buoys and various devices signaling obstacles or indicating the access channel of vessels.

Double bottom of ships used to store fuel (fuel ballast tank) and to ballast the ship or modify the base (water ballast).

Barge (Barge)
Canal boat or maritime parallelepiped without means of propulsion.

Bay-plan (loading plan)
Plan giving information about each container in each cell.

Made of cast steel, the bollard is the terminal used to anchor the moorings of a boat to the port. It is also called mooring bollard.

Build Operate and Transfer: A form of partnership in which the dealer carries out the work himself and then operates it for an agreed period of time before handing it over to the licensor.

Floating device installed on the water to indicate their way to the ships.


Short Sea Shipping
Navigation on short distances near the coast, subject to the national regulations of the countries concerned.

Vessel compartment below the lower deck to contain the goods.

Car Ferry
Ship carrying passengers and their vehicles. The vehicles enter the ship through a door opening directly to the garage.

Tank barge
Barge for the bulk transport of liquids.

Person (owner or not of the merchandise) who ships the goods.

Rider cart
Pneumatic tire-mounted parking trolley that rides the container to lift, move or stack it, moving on a flat, reinforced surface

Access channel
Path laid out on the water and marked for the passage of the ships.

Constituent of cement

Device floating on the water to moor the ships

Shipping line
Maritime carrier.

Stopover account
Invoice addressed to the shipowner and showing all the services provided on his behalf during the stopover of his ship.

Maritime Conference
Group of shipowners serving the same lines, having concluded between them agreements of tariff, traffic, organization of the services, in order to control the competition.

Bill of lading
Representative title of the goods during a maritime transport, taking the place of receipt of what the ship loads on board the ship. It gives a description of the goods.

Representative representing the operator of the vessel (shipowner or charterer) in all the functions of the armament, in the port of call of the ship. He organizes the stopover, recruits the freight, delivers the goods, assists the Captain and the crew in the accomplishment of all the formalities relating to the stopover. It is remunerated by freight commissions and agency fees.

Container (container)
"Box", generally metallic and of parallelepipedal shape, with standardized dimensions, for the transport of various goods, solid or liquid and which can be handled interchangeably on trucks, wagons, barges and ships. There are different sizes but the most commonly used containers are those of 20 feet and 40 feet. There are many types of containers, the main ones being: • The general purpose container, • The refrigerated container, • The open top container, • The tank container.

Transit Corridor
The route chosen by the off-shore loader, which includes the port and pre- and post-routing route taken

constituting cement


Rectangular basin equipped with docks for berthing ships.

Operation consisting for a ship, to empty the compartments (ballasts) of the sea water which he filled them to get heavier during his empty journeys.

Devices hooked to the dock to protect ships from docking.

Dispersion of the goods on arrival for the different recipients (see grouping).

Moving a ship along the wharf by means of its moorings.

Unloading (stripping)
Action to empty a container of its contents.

Traffic diversions
Phenomenon in which traffic sent by shippers from a country or destined for them passes through a foreign port.

A dike is a backfill designed to block or deflect a stream of water

Port worker who loads and unloads the ship.

Refers to a container filled (stuffed) at the place of production of the goods (factory) to be emptied (depot) at the place of use.

Refers to a container filled (stuffed) at the place of production of the goods (factory) to be emptied (depot) at the terminal platform.

Operation that consists of digging or removing sediments (sand, mud ...) at the bottom of ponds or channels to improve or maintain the depths of water

Equipment used for dredging the seabed or lagoon

Duc d'Alb
Beam of wooden poles, steel tubes of cement blocks anchored in the bottom of ponds or channels, on which a ship can moor or lean.


E.T.A. (Estimated time of arrival)
Expected date and time of arrival at the port of call (if G.M.T. is not specified, this is local time).

E.t.c. (empty transcontainer)
Empty container.

E.T.S. (Estimated time sailing)
Date and time scheduled for departure (see E.T.A.).

Hatch (hatch)
Opening in the deck of a ship and generally used for the loading and unloading of goods. The word panel, which is the hatch cover, is often misused as a synonym.

Wire rope used by hoisting machines to grab parcels and handle them.

Stuffing (stuffing)
The process of filling a freight container before it is shipped by land or sea.

Evitage (water basin)
A body of water large enough to allow a vessel to turn


Technique consisting of bundles of branches, wicker woven at the bottom of the water or on the banks to protect them against silting or erosion.

FCL (Full Container Load)
Fully loaded container for home-based transport. The shipping company does not interfere in the stuffing and unloading of the goods.

Feeder (feeder vessel, collector vessel)
A relatively small vessel that allows cargo at a main port to be broken up at different ports by a large, low-level vessel, and vice versa, to collect goods at the secondary ports for assembly in the main port .

Feedering (feederization)
Organization of feeders lines (collection and redistribution of goods by feeders).

Flat (container)
Containers having only the floor and the uprights and which can be stacked when empty.

Perils of the sea
Accident of all kinds occurring at sea to the ship and the goods carried.

Handling Charges
Costs resulting from different handling of containers in depots or terminals.

Freight (freight)
FRET (Freight): The cost of transporting a particular commodity by sea. It is payable either in advance (freight prepaid) or at destination (at destination or freight collect). The false freight (deadfreight) is the compensation of the shipowner by a shipper who held the place but did not deliver the goods. There may be some surfrets (see this word). Freight also refers to the commodity itself which is embarked on the ship.

Rental of the vessel by its owner; parallel of charter, taken in hiring of a ship.



Railway yard
Any open area for assembly of export cargo or for the placement of import cargo awaiting domestic transport.

Stacking containers on top of one another. The stacking height is the number of stacked containers.

Grouping (loading)
Action consisting in grouping consignments of goods that can come from different loaders, for example grouping isolated packages in a container

See Charge Mast

Rubber Tyred Gantry (RTG)
Mobile wheeled crane used for the movement and positioning of containers in a container yard. This type of crane can also be used to load and unload containers transported by train.

Crane operator
Handling equipment operator: cranes, gantries.

Input from the cement manufacturing process


Sorting and auction hall
Shed for sorting and selling local fish.

Geographical area of economic influence or commercial hinterland of a port.

Port Hub
Port transhipment platform where the correspondence of goods, usually containerized, is organized.


Successive implementation of several modes of transport with the aid of means making it possible to avoid load breaks.


Gauge (tonnage)
Official measurement of the internal capabilities of ships. The unit is the barrel of gauge (gross tone, register tone). We distinguish: 1 - gross tonnage (gross tonnage) which is the internal capacity of the ship and its superstructures. 2 - Gross Tonnage itself (gross register tonnage T.J.B / G.R.T.) which is the capacity of the vessel below deck. 3- the net tonnage (net register T / N / R) which is the usable capacity for goods.

Just in time
Organization of just-in-time production aimed at minimizing stocks.


Operation consisting of mooring, de-aerating or mooring the ship's moorings.

Professional who provides the mooring activity.

Operation consisting in detaching the moorings from the ship that is to sail.

LCL (Less than Container Load)
Container not filled by the same customer. An LCL container is made up of lots of different customers that share the same origin and destination. This is normally used when the lots of goods do not have enough volume to use a full container (FCL). In these cases, they are initially consolidated in a container by a logistic operator, thus saving costs. On arrival at destination, the goods are deconsolidated again before being handed over to the different customers.

Dead weight (water, pigs of cast iron, sand, etc ...) ensuring the stability of the ship from where the expression ship on ballast = empty ship or, better, light. Lester = put ballast.

Lift on-lift off (lo / lo)
Vertical handling technique consisting in the transfer of goods on board the ship and vice versa using cranes or equipment of the ship. Also denotes some modern vertical handling vessels for pre-slung parcels, with large panels and without abseiling on board

LOAD LINE (Load line)
Inscription painted on the hull and approved by the classification society marking the waterline that the loaded vessel must not exceed. It is still called freeboard mark.

Regular line
Service provided by a shipping company, its vessels providing organized liaison on a regular schedule between specific ports. (as opposed to chartered vessels or "tramping").

Main shipping line, usually provided by large vessels (see mother ship).

Llyods register
British Bureau of Classification. Refers to the international register which lists all ships manufactured in the world, as well as their main characteristics.

Overall Length (LOA)
Linear measurement of a ship from front to back.


Freight storage store generally located not far from wharves

Summary statement of bills of lading covering goods loaded on a ship.

Containerized goods
Goods transported in a container.

Miscellaneous merchandise (general & nbsp; cargo)
& nbsp; Goods composed of miscellaneous parcels as opposed to liquid and solid bulk.

Anyone who commits himself to the shipowner to serve on board a ship. The crew is composed & nbsp; officers and enforcement personnel.

Charge Mat
(Crane) Lifting equipment installed on the vessel and allowing it to handle the cargo on its own.

Nautical mile or nautical mile
Measure of maritime distance of about 1852 m. Also called nautical, it corresponds to the minute of the meridian. The 1/10 mile is cable (cable lenght): 185 m.

Flour mill
Flour mill (mill).



Trunk mooring
Mooring that takes place on a trunk



See Nautical Mile

Panamax ship
Ship whose width allows the crossing of the Panama Canal.

Ship "post-panamax"
"Ship whose dimensions, over 32 m wide and more than 11 m draft, prevent it from passing through the Panama Canal.

Cargo ship
Vessel used to transport goods in various forms.

Ship specializing in the transport of bulk liquid products (petroleum products, chemicals, gas, wine, oil, ...)

Ship line performing regular lines.

Support ship
, collector ship see feeder.

Multipurpose vessel
(Versatile Cargo)

Non-specialized vessel
poorly specialized for the transport of goods (general merchandise, whether or not packaged, in bags, in bulk, in containers, cars, manufactured goods, etc. as well as goods packed in unconventional formats)

Container ship
Specialized vessel for the transport of containers.

RORO ship
or Rover Mode of transport using vessels equipped with ramps on the inside (placed at the rear or on the side) and allowing the loading and unloading of rolling stock and freight on trailers.

Tanker or oil tanker
Tanker specialized in the transport of petroleum products

Tramp ship
As opposed to the regular line vessel, ship without a fixed route whose destinations vary depending on the availability of cargo onboard or on board.

Bulk ship
It usually operates a charter contract and may call at any port in the world, depending on the load offers.

Mother Ship

Nose of platforms
Long haul transoceanic, sailing on mother lines, making few stops and mapped to smaller vessels for transhipments, see feeder.

Upper part of the wharf on the water side.

Node or nodal point
Marine speed unit corresponding to one nautical mile per hour (ie 1852m / h).


or Post-Panamax A container with an open roof.



see "sub-hoist".



Entry pass of the Vridi Canal
Outlet at sea of the Vridi canal.



Piloting consists in the assistance given to captains by qualified persons (the pilots) for the conduct of their ships during my maneuvers of entry and exit of the Port of Abidjan, as well as during their movements in the waters of the Port Abidjan.

Professional Driver
who assists and advises the captain in the movements of entry and exit of the port.

Starter used to take the pilot aboard the ship to assist or to return to the pilot station after the maneuver.

Conduit used for the transport of liquid products (hydrocarbons, wines, oils ...)

Average high sea
(HMM) The highest average level that the water reaches when the tide goes up.

(Deck load) Goods loaded on the deck so exposed to the weather.

Market Port
Port that handles the transit of goods from or to its hinterland, as opposed to a transhipment port.

Dry port
Inland intermodal site offering the services of a port: handling, storage ...

Key barges


Gantry "over-panamax"
Portico with dimensions adapted to those of a post-panamax ship


Pre and post routing
See overpanamax.

Pre and post routing
Land transport to transport goods from their place of origin to the seaport and from the seaport to their place of destination.

Handling technique which consists in grouping goods into unit loads ready to be loaded by means of a spreader.


Natural basins or harbors (often river mouths) used by vessels for mooring and commercial operations in the past

Ship or refrigerated container. Carrying or Containing goods under controlled temperature.

Activity consisting of tugboats assisting the vessel during entry, docking, and exit maneuvers by pushing or pulling it

(tug) A small but powerful service vessel used to tow, push or guide larger vessels during certain maneuvers in the harbor including entry, exit and docking maneuvers.

Roll on-Roll off
(RO / RO) See Ro-Ro ship

Breakage of charge
Passage of goods from one mode of transport to another.


(lashing) Mooring of the cargo under the responsibility of the Captain, for the crossing.

Line service
See line ship

Shift Vacation from a docker team
Shift, or shift work, is uninterrupted port work. Its duration varies according to the ports from 6 to 8H in a row.

Slops are marine debris, sludge and other impurities that remain at the bottom of ship's tanks.

Location for receiving a container on a container ship, subject to lump sum rental.

On boarding, the goods are brought at the expense of the loader under the hooks of the loading hoist. On landing, the receiver takes the goods under the hook of the hoist. In general the goods removed under the hoist is directly out of the harbor,

Operation of supply of fuels (coal, fuel oil, gas oil) necessary for the running of the ship.

Rectangular beam for handling containers. See Palator, Staries see Surestaries.

Statement of facts
Report of call sent by the agent to the shipowner. This is the chronological record of the loading or unloading operations allowing the calculation of demurrage or dispatch on the time sheet.

In northern ports, responsible shipping contractors (unlike the Mediterranean steer) handling (loading, unloading, etc ...) goods.

In chartering contracts, the ship has a certain amount of time called board days or staries for cargo handling operations. If it exceeds it, it is said in demurrage and shippers must pay the shipowner or charterer penalties (also called demurrage) calculated at X ... per day and pro rata per hour. The time lost is recorded by the time sheet.

Supplement increasing the freight according to the congestion of the ports, congestion surge (congestion load), the rise of the price of the fuel, fuel overfur (bunker surcharge) etc ...


Twenty feet Equivalent Unit or Equivalent Twenty feet (EVP)


Tare weight
(tare) Weight of empty container.

(Transcontainer) 20 ', 30', 35 ', 40' container.

Space consisting of a quay and a platform specially designed to receive, handle, store and evacuate a given category of goods (containers, hydrocarbons, etc ...

Adjusted horizontal surface (slab, bitumen, pavement ...) used for the handling and storage of the goods in the port.

Time sheet
(Timesheet) Record maintained by the steeder and summarizing the count of shipboard operations (vessel arrival times, working time, start time of operations, details of quantities of goods handled, time of stoppage of work, etc ...).

Air draft
Distance between the water level and the highest level of the vessel above the water including the derricks, etc. Overall height. It is useful to know when the ship is called under bridges.

(draft) For a ship: the height between the waterline of a ship and the lower level of the keel (the lowest part of the ship). For a body of water: it is the vertical distance between the water level and the bottom of the water; it is the minimum depth necessary for the ship to float. It is expressed in feet or meters.

See gauge


Ton or metric ton
Tonne or metric ton: 2,204.6 pounds.

Drum barrel
(Register your) 2,83m3 or 100cft. See Gauge.

Deadweight tons
(TPL) The maximum weight that can be loaded aboard a ship, including cargo, ballast and stores.

Traffic "ro-ro"
"Traffic carried by RORO vessels.

Transhipment traffic
Goods from a foreign country landed in a given port and re-shipped to another vessel for their final port of destination.

Transit traffic
Usually refers to traffic passing through a port that originates or goes to a landlocked country. This traffic borrows other modes of transport (road, rail, river ...) for the pre or post forwarding to the port.


Transit time
length of stay Duration of passage of a ship or merchandise in a port.


Multimodal transport
Organization of a transport using several different modes of transport (air, river, sea, router, railway).


Vigie or Semaphore
Coastal surveillance station which provides surveillance, liaison and information missions, identification of vessels, navigation assistance, and maritime traffic control. The lookout ensures a permanent watch (24h / 24) and informs the captaincy of ship movements.

Liquid bulk
Freight transported and stored in liquid form rather than in a barrel or similar container.