HAMBURG RULES 1978

Transportation by sea

The Hamburg Rules, adopted at a conference in 1978 (in Hamburg) the Convention did not come into force until November 1992 - it took until this time for the necessary number of countries to accede to the Convention. However, none of the world;s major trading nations have acceded to this Convention, and have not incorporated the provisions of such in their legislation.

The general view appears to be that the Hamburg Rules have over-compensated in their attempts to address a perceived imbalance, in the Hague Rules, in favour of shipowners/carriers - some developing countries taking the view that the original Hague Rules of 1924 had been set by 'colonial maritime nations' to help preserve their maritime interests.

Under the Hamburg Rules, the carrier has a responsibility for the loss and/or damage to goods whilst in their care, and for delays in delivery, UNLESS the carrier can prove that all reasonable measures have been taken to avoid such loss and/or damage, or delay in delivery.