Guideline Standards for AQIS Container Inspection Stands
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Various styles and types of container inspection stands are utilised for the purpose of inspecting containers for potential quarantine risk material at wharfs, quarantine approved premises and depots around the nation. This is due to a variety of layouts, operational requirements and handling systems. Parameters including Australian Standards in engineering and design and OH&S requirements for personnel involved in the cleaning and inspection of containers must be defined. Requirements for new businesses that wish to commence operations of this nature have been identified and are to be implemented.
To provide written guidelines as a minimum requirement to address the concerns described in the areas mentioned above.
Engineering and design standards
All stands are to be constructed in such a way as to meet the risk assessment and minimum engineering standards identified in the Covaris Report — Risk Assessment for Support and Inspection of Large Containers — Final Report v4 7th June 2001 — Dr R Platfoot.
These recommendations include:
- Top of columns of frames may need to be braced longitudinally
- Annual inspection by certified engineers of corrosion damage with evidence provided to AQIS
- Certification of a frame by a qualified structural engineer with current certificates available to AQIS on request
- Rated static loading of 30.48 tonnes — maximum rating of Series R platform based containers
- Dynamic load rating of 2.0 — which mean a maximum load rating of 60.96 tonnes — known likely dynamic rating as provided in this report
Recommended AQIS design requirements for container stands
- Any design of stand must provide safe, obstruction free and highly visible means of inspecting and cleaning of shipping containers. This means that any bracing requirements are to be manufactured in such a way as to avoid areas of shadowing that would make inspection of the underside of containers difficult.
- Stands must provide full support to 20–foot or 40–foot container dimensions.
- Cross bracing should not obstruct visibility to the underside or protrude in any way that could constitute a risk from head bumping under current OH&S guidelines.
- Fork lifting pockets are not to protrude or extend into the inspection area of the stand.
- If flooring is provided, this must be at the standard step height from the ground and must be of such a construction as to provide safe support with no tripping risk to inspectors/cleaners.
Floor design and bracing must also be of such a design as to not inhibit the passage of contaminants/soil and water through to the ground below. No pockets, flat surfaces or stepped joints.
- Floor or ground to the top of the stand where the container rests must provide head clearance of a minimum of 188cm and a maximum of 200cm.
- If guide plates are provided for the safe location of containers atop the stands these must not impede the use of chain lifting devices that engage into the container twist locks.
Twist lock access for manual handling of the stand must be provided to facilitate forklift spreader bar engagement. If locating pins are used for container holding these should be made easily removable.
- Suitable safe mobile steps, fixed ladder or platform compliant with the appropriate Australian standards must be provided to allow inspection of the roof sections of containers.
- There can be no overhang on the front of the stand that will prevent forklifts approach access.
- Stands must be fitted with an identification plate recording stand number, certifying engineer’s company name and details and the date of certification.
- The use of two twenty foot stands placed end to end so as to be used as a single forty foot stand is to be avoided. If however, this must occur the two stands must be anchored or tied together as a single unit and must provide unhindered access between the two.
Requirements for new enterprises/businesses
- Any new business that wishes to commence cleaning operations must contact AQIS to discuss the design layout etc. prior to commencement of construction to ensure compliance with design standards. Stands must be certified to the standards required as per the Covaris report by an independent registered structural engineer and plated accordingly.
Procedures for stands that incur damage or are identified as damaged
- Any damage/fault or sign of impact must be reported to the wharf/depot manager and AQIS by notifying the elected AQIS OH&S officer and submitting an incident/hazard report. The stand must be immediately removed from service and undergo a through inspection by an independent certified engineer prior to its re–certification and re–use.
These processes and procedures will alleviate many of the current problems encountered utilising container inspection stands and provide an avenue to early rectification of problems and OH&S responsibilities.
Consultation with AQIS during the construction stage of any new stand is highly recommended.
08 Nov 2010