There's a hole in my container

A typical scenario involving risks with containers and packaging could involve the retail industry. A line of clothing that is manufactured in Asia needs to be shipped directly to a European buyer just in time for its seasonal release.

However, it would only take a fresh water leak from a hole in one of the sea containers carrying a part of the shipment of clothing during the course of transit, to cause a humidity condition within the container. While the clothing would not directly be damaged by the water, the moisture would allow a mildew odour to affect that part of the shipment.

Shipment rendered un-saleable

When delivered to the distribution centre, the clothes, while physically undamaged, would have a smell that would deter any would-be buyer, also affecting the other clothes on the store shelves.

It might be that not all the clothes would be affected, perhaps only particular sizes, but the clothes would be rendered un-saleable. The result would be that the entire clothing line, and its launch, could be threatened.

Risk mitigation

Such a problem can be avoided by a simple loss prevention measure. Having a container inspection program put in place by the supplier, the hole in the container could be identified before the container is loaded with the cargo for shipment to Europe, and the entire loss could be avoided.

Inspection programs of containers and packaging is a simple yet vital risk mitigation measure that may remove or reduce potentially devastating, and yet avoidable, losses.

The solution

In such a situation, the Zurich Marine claims team, in conjunction with local appointed experts, would implement an action plan that utilised a cutting edge ozone treatment process to eliminate the mildew odour and recondition the clothing, making it once again saleable by the European buyer or distributor.

This solution would not only have reclaimed the affected clothing, but also prevented a larger issue for the insured. The entire order could have been cancelled due to damage to a portion of it, and may have jeopardised the overall relationship between the designer and retailer had the clothing line not been available for sale at the outset of the new season.

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Case study - There's a hole in my container

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A typical scenario involving risks with containers and packaging could involve retail industry. A line of clothing that is manufactured in Asia needs to be shipped directly to an Australian buyer just in time for its seasonal release.