B/N- Booking note
BOATSWAIN (BOSUN)- The highest unlicensed rating in the deck department who has
immediate charge of all deck hands and who in turn comes under the direct orders of the master
or chief mate or mate.
BOILERS- Steam generating units used aboard ship to provide steam for propulsion (and) for
heating and other auxiliary purposes.
BOW THRUSTERS - A propeller at the lower sea-covered part of the bow of the ship which turns
at right angles to the fore-and-aft line and thus provides transverse thrust as a manoeuvering aid.
B/p or BOP - Balance of payments.
BREADTH- See Beam
BREAKBULK VESSEL- A general, multipurpose, cargo ship that carriers cargoes of nonuniform
sizes, often on pallets, resulting in labor-intensive loading and unloading; calls at various ports to
pick up different kinds of cargoes.
BREAK BULK- The process of assimilating many small shipments into one large shipment at a
central point so that economies of scale may be achieved; to commence discharge of cargo.
BRIDGE -Used loosely to refer to the navigating section of the vessel where the wheel house and
chart room are located; erected structure amidships or aft or very rarely fore over the main deck
of a ship to accommodate the wheelhouse.
BROKERAGE- Percentage of freight payable to broker (by owners in c/p's) or applicable to sale
BULK -Cargo shipped in loose condition and of a homogeneous nature.Cargoes that are shipped
unpackaged either dry, such as grain and ore, or liquid, such as petroleum products. Bulk service
generally is not provided on a regularly scheduled basis, but rather as needed, on specialized
ships, transporting a specific commodity.
BULK CARRIER- Ship specifically designed to transport vast amounts of cargoes such as sugar,
grain, wine, ore, chemicals, liquefied natural gas; coal and oil. See also LNG Carrier, Tanker,
BULKHEAD - A name given to any vertical partition which separates different compartments or
spaces from one another.
BUNKERS- Fuel consumed by the engines of a ship; compartments or tanks in a ship for fuel
BUOY - A floating object employed as an aid to mariners to mark the navigable limits of channels,
their fairways, sunken dangers, isolated rocks, telegraph cables, and the like; floating devices
fixed in place at sea, lake or river as reference points for navigation or for other purposes.
CABLE SHIP- A specially constructed ship for the laying and repairing of telegraph and telephone
cables across channels, seas, lakes, and oceans.
CABOTAGE -The carriage of goods or passengers for remuneration taken on at one point and
discharged at another point within the territory of the same country.
CABOTAGE POLICIES- Reservation of a country's coastal (domestic) shipping for its own flag
CAORF -Computer-Assisted Operations Research Facility: A MarAd R&D facility located at U.S.
Merchant Marine Academy, Kings Point,New York.
CAPESIZE- A vessel too large to pass through the Suez Canal.
CARGO HANDLING- The act of loading and discharging a cargo ship.
CARGO PLAN- A plan giving the quantities and description of the various grades carried in the
ship's cargo tanks, after the loading is completed.
CARGO PREFERENCE- Reserving a portion of a nation's imports and exports to national-flag
CARGO RETENTION CLAUSES- Clauses introduced by charterers based on shortage of
delivered cargo because of increased oil prices.
CARRIAGE OF GOODS BY SEA ACT - A law enacted in 1936 covering the transportation of
merchandise by sea to or from ports of the United States and in foreign trades.
CARRIERS- Owners or operators of vessels providing transportation to shippers. The term is also
used to refer to the vessels.
CATAMARAN- A double or treble-hulled vessel constructed in wood, aluminum or reinforced
glass fibre and is also composed of two or three hulls diagonally joined together by various
methods. Normally no ballast is needed to counteract the center buoyancy since it enjoys good
stability at sea.
CATUG -Short for Catamaran Tug. A rigid catamaran tug connected to a barge. When joined
together, they form and look like a single hull of sa ship; oceangoing integrated tug-barge
CATWALK - A raised bridge running fore and aft from the midship, and also called "walkway". It
affords safe passage over the pipelines and other deck obstructions.
CBF- Cubic feet
CBM- Cubic metres
CCC -Commodity Credit Corporation.
CCF -Capital Construction Fund: A tax benefit for operators of U.S.-built, U.S.-flag ships in the
U.S. foreign, Great Lakes, or noncontiguous domestic trades, by which taxes may be deferred on
income deposited in a fund to be used for the replacement of vessels.
CDS -Construction Differential Subsidy: A direct subsidy paid to U.S. shipyards building U.S.-flag
ships to offset high construction costs in American shipyards. An amount of subsidy (up to 50
percent) is determined by estimates of construction cost differentials between U.S. and foreign
CERTIFICATE OF REGISTRY - A document specifying the nation registry of the vessel.
C & F -Cost and Freight
C & I -Cost and Insurance
CHANDLER- A person who deals in the selling of provisions, dried stores,etc.
CHARTERER- The person to whom is given the use of the whole of the carrying capacity of a
ship for the transportation of cargo or passengers to a stated port for a specified time.
CHARTER RATES - The tariff applied for chartering tonnage in a particular trade.
CHARTER PARTY- A contractual agreement between a ship owner and a cargo owner, usually
arranged by a broker, whereby a ship is chartered (hired) either for one voyage or a period of
Chemical tanker - Specially designed for the transport of chemicals.
CHIEF ENGINEER- The senior engineer officer responsible for the satisfactory working and
upkeep of the main and auxiliary machinery and boiler plant on board ship.
CHIEF MATE - The officer in the deck department next in rank to the master; second in command
of a ship. He is next to the master, most especially in the navigation and as far as the deck
department is concerned. The chief mate assumes the position of the Master in his absence.
C.I.F. - Cost, Insurance and Freight: Export term in which the price quoted by the exporter
includes the costs of ocean transportation to the port of destination and insurance coverage.
CLASSIFICATION SOCIETY- Worldwide experienced and reputable societies. which undertake
to arrange inspections and advise on the hull and machinery of a ship. A private organization that
supervises vessels during their construction and afterward, in respect to their seaworthiness, and
the placing of vessels in grades or "classes" according to the society's rules for each particular
type. It is not compulsory by law that a shipowner have his vessel built according to the rules of
any classification society; but in practice, the difficulty in securing satisfactory insurance rates for
an unclassed vessel makes it a commercial obligation.
CLEAN SHIP- Refers to tankers which have their cargo tanks free of traces of dark persistent oils
which remain after carrying crudes and heavy fuel oils.
COA- Contract of affreightment
COASTWISE- Domestic shipping routes along a single coast.
CODE OF LINER CONDUCT (UNCTAD)- A convention drafted under the auspices of the United
Nations Conference on Trade and Development which provides that all shipping traffic between
two foreign countries is to be regulated as far as the quantities of shipments are concerned on the
following percentages -- 40% for owners of the country of origin, 40% for owners of country of
destination, and 20% for owners of the country which is neither the origin nor the destination.
COGSA- Carriage of Goods by Sea
COLLIER- Vessel used for transporting coal.
COLLISION AVOIDANCE SYSTEM- Electronic system commonly used to prevent collisions in
inland navigable waterways.
COLREG -Convention on International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.
COMBI -Combination passenger/cargo vessel; a vessel specifically designed to carry both
containers and conventional cargoes.
Combined ships - Ships which can carry both liquid and dry bulk cargoes.
COMMISSION- See "Brokerage"
COMMON CARRIER- Holds himself out for hire to the general public. Must post rates and cannot
discriminate against customers whose cargo he is equipped to carry.
COMPLEMENT - The number of officers and crew employed upon a vessel for its safe navigation
CONFERENCE- An affiliation of shipowners operating over the same route(s) who agree to
charge uniform rates and other terms of carriage. A conference is "closed" if one can enter only
by the consent of existing members of the conference. It is "open" if anyone can enter by meeting
certain technical and financial standards. Conference members are common carriers.
CONGESTIONS- Port/berth delays
CONSIGNEE - The person to whom cargo is consigned as stated on the bills of lading.
Construction unit - Equipped to assist during offshore construction and maintenance work.
CONSIGNOR- The person named in the bill of lading as the one from whom the goods have
been received for shipment.
CONTAINER- A van, flatrack, open top trailer or other similar trailer body on or into which cargo
is loaded and transported without chassis aboard ocean vessels.; a large rectangular or square
container/box of a strong structure that can withstand continuous rough handling from ship to
shore and back. It opens from one side to allow cargo to be stacked and stowed into it.
CONTAINER SHIP- A ship constructed in such a way that she can easily stack containers near
and on top of each other as well as on deck. A vessel designed to carry standard intermodal
containers enabling efficient loading, unloading, and transport to and from the vessel.
Oceangoing merchant ship designed to transport a unit load of standard-sized containers 8 feet
square and 20 or 40 feet long. The hull is divided into cells that are easily accessible through
large hatches, and more containers can be loaded on deck atop the closed hatches. Loading and
unloading can proceed simultaneously using giant traveling cranes at special berths. Container
ships usually carry in the range of 25,000 to 50,000 deadweight tons. Whereas a general-cargo
ship may spend as much as 70 percent of its life in port loading and discharging cargo, a
container ship can be turned around in 36 hours or less, spending as little as 20 percent of its
time in port. This ship type is the result of American design innovation. Specialized types of
container ships are the LASH and SeaBee which carry floating containers (or "lighters,") and
RoRo ships, which may carry containers on truck trailers.
CONTRACT OF AFFREIGHTMENT (COA)- A service contract under which a ship owner agrees
to transport a specified quantity of fuel products or specialty products, at a specified rate per ton,
between designated loading and discharge ports. This type contract differs from a spot or
consecutive voyage charter in that no particular vessel is. specified.
C/P- Charter Party
CPI -Consumer Price Index.
CREW -The personnel engaged on board ship, excluding the master and officers and the
passengers on passenger ships.
CREW LIST- List prepared by the master of a ship showing the full names, nationality, passport
or discharge book number, rank and age of every officer and crew member engaged on board
that ship. This serves as one of the essential ship's documents which is always requested to be
presented and handed over to the customs and immigration authorities when they board the
vessel on arrival.
CROSS-TRADES- Foreign-to-foreign trade carried by ships from a nation other than the two
CRUDE OIL WASHING- A technique of cleaning tanks in oil tankers.
Cubic capacity - The most important commercial measurement when the intrinsic weight of the
cargo is so low that the ship becomes full without being loaded to the cargo line. Is expressed in
cubic metres or cubic feet.
DANGEROUS CARGO- All substances of an inflammable nature which are liable to spontaneous
combustion either in themselves or when stowed adjacent to other substances and, when mixed
with air, are liable to generate explosive gases or produce suffocation or poisoning or tainting of
DANGEROUS LIQUIDS- Liquids giving off inflammable vapors.
DAVITS -Two radial cranes on a ship which hold the lifeboats. They are constructed in such a
way as to lower and lift the lifeboats the easiest way possible and are also unobstructed in case
of an emergency.
DEADFREICHT- Space booked by shipper or charterer on a vessel but not used
DEADFREIGHT FACTOR- Percentage of a ship's carrying capacity that is not utilized.
DEADWEIGHT/DWAT/DWCC- A common measure of ship carrying capacity. The number of tons
(2240 lbs.) of cargo, stores and bunkers that a vessel can transport. It is the difference between
the number of tons of water a vessel displaces "light" and the number of tons it displaces "when
submerged to the 'deep load line'." A vessel's cargo capacity is less than its total deadweight
tonnage. The difference in weight between a vessel when it is fully loaded and when it is empty