[ID] => 11639
[post_author] => 34
[post_date] => 2019-10-31 11:04:46
[post_date_gmt] => 2019-10-31 11:04:46
[post_content] => Every so often we field an enquiry from someone – who has a better memory than anyone here – looking for an electronic copy of an article from way back. It is unfortunately the case that it took HCB some time to catch up with the opportunities offered by information technology to build a library of electronic versions of the magazine so the answer is often “afraid not”.
Indeed, these monthly columns looking back 30 years rest on the availability – often through the good offices of former contributor Herbert J Kennard – of a hard copy of the issue. So it is again this month and, as the image above clearly shows, the November 1989 edition was so well thumbed that the corner has fallen off the front cover.
Inside, though, there was the usual mix of articles designed to keep readers up to speed with developments in the movement of dangerous goods, some of them now, with the benefit of three decades’ worth of hindsight, decidedly quaint. There was, for example, a report on the port of Hamburg’s Dakosy computer system, designed to provide an effective means of streamlining the movement of shipping documentation, illustrated with a picture (in black and white, of course, of a young woman apparently very happy to be sat at a desk in from of a small computer screen (presumably in black and green) atop a unit with two floppy disk drives.
On more familiar ground, HCB’s November 1989 issue carried an article by Dr Andrew Kruszewski of the Warren Spring Laboratory on the phenomenon of the liquefaction of solid bulk cargoes (notably ores and concentrates) during transport by sea, something that is still a frequent cause of ship losses, particularly in south-east Asia. Dr Kruszewski had trawled the archives, coming up with the case of the Scandinavian vessel Aquilla, which had a close escape when its iron ore concentrate cargo liquefied during a passage in 1910. It seems clear that the causes of cargo liquefaction have been well known for many decades, so the fact that accidents continue to happen can only be put down to poor practice – often compounded by commercial considerations.
Another topic that is all too familiar these days is the inspection of freight containers and the poor practice that such inspections reveal. HCB reported in 1989 on a programme put in place by the authorities in Finland, mirroring that established by the US Coast Guard, to inspect freight containers for infractions of the dangerous goods regulations. It will come as no surprise to readers to find that the results of that programme showed a significant number of boxes that had missing or defective documentation or marking and placarding errors.
In his editorial that month, Mike Corkhill, founding editor of HCB, reminded readers of the case of the containership Asia Freighter, aboard which four crewmen were overcome by fumes as they inspected the security of containers as their vessel pitched and rolled through a storm off Land’s End, UK in 1974. Response personnel eventually tracked down the source to two loose cylinders of arsine gas that were rolling around inside a container; one was leaking through a damaged valve. The shipment had been improperly declared and the container was not properly placarded. Does this sound familiar?
[post_title] => 30 Years Ago: November 1989
[post_status] => publish
[comment_status] => open
[ping_status] => open
[post_name] => 30-years-ago-november-1989
[post_modified] => 2019-10-15 13:07:43
[post_modified_gmt] => 2019-10-15 12:07:43
[post_parent] => 0
[guid] => https://www.hcblive.com/?p=11639
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