In the world of international trade, it is customary to use containers to facilitate the transportation of goods because of their maneuverability, easy handling and operation, costs, and security. However, situations such as robberies, irregularities, losses, and contaminations due to the shipment of drugs may still happen, despite the security measures and controls carried out.
These forms of crime include:
– The burglary with force of the whole container.
– The tampering of the system.
– The theft of the goods with the involvement of the driver or organized crime.
– The theft by fraud.
There are plenty of container seals, consisting in a toothed plastic strap, that are used in order to move containers in a short time. These seals are numbered and have a bar code.
The plastic “bottle” container seals, consisting in two joints (male-female), are not recommended because they can be easily tampered.
The electronic seal with polycarbonate, also with two joints (male-female), is marked in the base and in the stem, numbered, has a bar code, and a electrical or a battery tester. It is complemented by a tape with the word VOID when removed.
Failures in the seals
Criminals, namely “terrestrial pirates”, drivers, or drug dealers, found that with a slight manipulation some seals could be opened and then closed leaving no trace.
Some designs were improved, but criminals have adjusted the manipulation leaving no trace and without touching the seals. This is mainly the case when we ignore some technical details of the system for handling containers, set forth in the BASC standards.
Given these circumstances, specifically these existing levels of insecurity, we may think that it is too complicated that these containers can be one hundred percent safe without the implementation of BASC control measures that reinforce the security for the final product.
Taking into account all the above, we must be very meticulous and comply with the BASC format, beacuse drug dealers have many ways to take out or introduce goods or drugs illegally, avoiding the inspections at ports.
It is very important the visual inspection of the containers, internally or externally, paying special attention to any nonconformity with the provisions of the commodate.
It is also important to inspect if the doors, hinges, locks, beams, undulations, and clamp bolts are in goods conditions; during the lower inspection we must be careful with the tunnel, the floor must be “perfect”, smooth, and with screws or fasteners of the same type. Always made of wood, the measurement of the lower protective foil, which usually is 50 cm.
The socket sets must be within reach and the protectors of the ventilation holes must be unobstructed. Remember that repairs are made at registered yards and with materials of good quality authorized by the shipping lines, such as the steel, painting, and weldings; therefore, if the container shows recent repairs, these must be related, and if they are suspected, it is better not to load the container and to request a change of yard.
The gutters or undulations of the side walls of the container must be well inspected, visually verifying that the undulations alternate towards the inside and outside, never with two equal consecutive undulations, and the beams, struts, and gutters must be thoroughly inspected.
It is important the emphasis that the BASC presents for the entire supply chain, such as the customers, carriers, customs brokers, customs brokerage companies, shipping lines, container yards, etc.
Remember, if your company does not comply with the BASC standards, the security chain will be broken and the normal performance of the efforts of the government entities will be affected, thus alerting the security entities engaged directly in that task. This will result in delays of deliveries, higher costs and more load and documents inspections, and therefore your products and services may be used for illegal activities. The BASC provides clear tools in order to identify vulnerabilities and protect the entire logistics chain.
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