Several people are involved in the loading or unloading of a ship. These people are such as the pilot who guides the ship to the dock where it will be loaded or unloaded. This person is important because, without them, the ships would run the risk of running aground or even colliding with each other in the chaos of looking for docking space (Kachel 2008). This person has a good knowledge of the waters and, therefore, is hired by the ship’s master to assist guide the large vessel. The pilot, therefore, serves to protect the ship as well as the marine life.
There is also the role played by the ship’s master. This is a senior person in the hierarchy of command of the ship. He/she has the responsibility of ensuring that the cargo within the ship is safely conveyed to its destination and disembarked from the ship in the case of unloading a ship. The other instance that the ship is being loaded with cargo, the ship’s master has to ensure that the safety of the cargo, as well as the ship and its crew, is maintained. Aside from this, the ship’s master is in charge of liaising with the port appointed a representative to ensure that everything is going well (Righetti and Rimaboschi 2008). This simply indicates the role that the ship’s master has to play in ensuring the safety of the ship and ship’s cargo.
As mentioned above, the ship’s master has to liaise with a port appointed representative. This individual is versed in the experience that the ship’s master will need to offload the cargo. As per the rules of the International Maritime Organization (1996), he/she together with the ship’s master is involved in developing a plan that ensures that the entire process of offloading or loading the cargo goes on smoothly. Due to the knowledge of the port, the representative has to ensure that the unloading machinery is availed. The representative also has to see to it that the ship’s master goes through the safety plans and agrees to them. This has the effect of ensuring the safety of all the people involved is upheld.