按照海事仲裁委员会仲裁择序规则的規定，本会主席根据双 方当事人的委托，分别指定张×臣和髙×来为仲裁员。两位仲裁员 共同推选邵×怡为首席仲裁员组成仲裁庭审理本案。
“阳春”轮一九七九年五月三十一日从广州黄埔装运木薯粉两 万袋计500公吨，运往法国勒阿弗尔。七月二十日抵勒阿弗尔后， 即日开始将货物直接卸入十二节车皮，七月二十一日卸完。卸货 时，发现一百三十一袋木薯粉破漏。七月二十三日货物由火车运抵 收货人所在的南特时，发现木薯粉袋沾染米象生长。申诉人要求被 诉人赔偿破包短少的九百七十五公斤计1 287法国法郎以及与木 薯粉袋沾染米象熏蒸有关的费用72 394.19法国法郎和检验费 3 972. 85法郎，外加利息和仲裁费用。
关于木薯粉袋沾染米象问题，申诉人提出，根据货物检验人的报告，米象全在木薯粉袋的外表，袋里并无虫子，因此损害系由沾染造成，不是货物的内在缺陷，而且货物在装船前经过广州商品检验局的检验，船长又签发了清洁提单，因此虫害是在装船以后发生的；在勒哈弗尔卸船以后，货物即被运往南特，卸货时间和铁路运输时间很短，运货的车皮调自不同的地方，以前仅装运过钢铁，因 此虫害不可能发生在卸船以后铁路运输的过程中；黄埔至勒哈弗尔的航程共五十天，舱内温度文逢宜米象，如果船舶以前的航次装 运过有虫害的大米，或本航次在装运木寒粉的第二舱内装有这种 货物，就会发生虫害。而且，在勒阿弗尔卸货时，收货人代理和船代 理共同签署的“卸货记录”中记载有活的米象，因此虫害发生在海 运阶段，根据提单规定，被诉人应对货物沾染米象负责。
被诉人提出，船舶在本航次第二舱内装运的货物为杂货、罐头之类，未装运任何粮食类货物；前两个航次自黄浦至日本各港装运 的是杂货、钢材、卡车等，也不曾装运球粮食，因此木薯粉不可能在 船上沾染米象。被诉人还提出，在勒阿弗尔卸货时并未发现米象， 因而被诉人已履行承运人根据提单应尽的义务，从而对在南特发现的虫害不负责任。
×××先生在南特签发的货物检验报告中称，“米象的生命周 期不可能发生在面粉中，ロ袋内部没有虫子，而仅在ロ袋的外表有 虫子。因此虫子是来自包装以外，而不是由于木薯粉有什么缺陷”。 对此，双方没有不同意见。
问题的焦点在于沾染米象是否发生在海运阶段，即在勒阿弗 尔卸货时货物的袋子上是否有虫子。申诉人首先有责任证明货物 是在海运过程中沾染虫子的。申诉人主张沾染发生在船上的依据 是收货人代理和船代理共同签署的5559号“卸货记录”，该记录在 括号内标有“有活的米象”。
仲裁庭审阅了申诉人所提供的文件。收货人代理在1979年7 月24日给收货人的2946号电传中称：“继报告在货物里发现米象 的电话，现确认本月20日和21日从车厢里直接接受货物时，我们 没有发现有虫。”收货人代理1979年7月26日致收货人的函称：“如同我们在本月24日2946号电传中所确认的那样，我们在接受 这批货时，未发现任何虫子的踪迹”，“我们让在(第5559号）记 录上写上‘在货物里有活的米象’。”仲裁庭认为，首先和直接见到 卸货时货物状況的收货人代理的上述电传和信件，比四天以后签 署的“验货记录”具有更强的证明力。因此，申诉人未能完成其举证 责任。在此情况下，铁路车皮是否有可能是米象来源的问题已不具 有决定性的意义。但仲裁庭愿意顺便提出，根据申诉人的检验人所 叙述的米象的生命周期，只有证明每节车皮接受货物前没有虫的 检验报告，或者证明这些车皮在装运本案货物以前足够长的时间 内均未装运可能沾染米象的货物，才能排除在车皮上沾染米象的 可能性，而申诉人并未提供这方面的证据。
3.本案仲裁手续费为×××英镑，实际开支为×××英镑， 合计×××英镑，由申诉人负担×××英镑，被诉人负担×××英镑。申诉人已预付仲裁手续费×××英镑，尚应向海事仲裁委员会 补付×××英镑。
China Council for the Promotion of InternationalTrade Maritime arbitration Commission AwardNO：FA(83)/OB
Claimants: solicitors of England acting on behalf of the Claiments Cargo Underwriters…Respondents…The shipowners…
…Solicitors England, acting on behalf of the Claiments Cargo Underwriters submitted to the Maritime Arbitration Commission for arbitration a dispute with the Respondents, the Shipowners…over shortage and infestation of the cassava starch shipped on board the m. v. “Yangchun” owned by the Respondents.
Pursuant to the Procedural Rules of Arbitration of the Maritime Arbitration Commission, the Chairman of the Commission, upon authorization of the respective parties, appointed Mr Chang Chienchen and Mr Kao Ghunlai as arbitrators. The two arbitrators jointly selected Mr Shao Shunyi as presiding arbitrator, thus forming the arbitration tribunal to examine the case.
I . Facts and Submission of the Parties
The m. v. “Yangchun” laden with 500 metric tons of cassava starch in 20 000 bags sailed from Whampoa for Le Havre, France on 31st May, 1979 and arrived at Le Havre on 20th July, The discharge of the cargo Was; commenced on the same day and completed on 21st July, The cargo ^as discharged direct into 12 railway wagons. Upon discharge, 131 bags of cassava starch were found to be torn and part-empty. On 23rd July , when the cargo was transferred by rail to Nantes where the consignees were located, the sacks of cassava starch were found to be contaminated by rice weevils. The Claimants lodged a claim against the Respondents for 975 kilos of shortage, resulting from the torn and part-empty bags in the sum of FFr. 1 287. 00 and the fumigation expenses incurred in respect of the .contaminated sacks of cassaca starch, in the sum of FFr. 72 394- 19 as well as survey expenses in the sum of FFr. 3 972.00, plus interest and costs of arbitration.
On the point of the shortage of 975 kilos of cassava starch, the Claimants submitted that this was already recorded in the Proces-verbal de Constat signed by the ship agents and the consignees’ agents upon discharge of the cargo from the vessel at Le Havre. The Respondents took no exception to the above submissions.
As regards the contamination by rice weevils of the sacks of cassava starch, the Claimants submitted that according to the Cargo Surveyor's Report the damage resulted from contamination not from inherent vice as the rice weevils were found to be concentrated towards the outside of the sacks of cassava starch and not the inside and, furthermore, the cargo was infested after loading on board the vessel since the cargo had been inspected by the Guangzhou Commodity Inspection Bureau prior to loading and the Master had issued a clean bill of lading; that the cargo could not have been infested at the stage of railway transport after discharge from the vessel as, upon discharge into the wagons at Le Havre, the cargo was immediately transferred to Nantes, the duration of which being too short to allow time for contamination and, moreover, the cargo was transferred in wagons which had been despatched from different places and had previously carried iron and steel； and that the sea passage of fifty days from Whampoa to Le Havre with a temperature in the holds good for rice weevils would be sufficient to allow infestation if the vessel carried infested rice cargo in a previous voyage or if infested rice cargo was loaded in the same hold as the cassava starch. The Claimants further submitted that as the presence in the cargo of living rice weevils was noted m the Proces-verbal de Constat jointly signed by the ship agents and the Consignees’ agents at the time of discharge at Le Havre , the cargo was thus infested during the sea passage and the Respondents should be liable for the contamination of the cargo by rice weevils under bill of lading.
The Respondents submitted that the cargo in No. 2 Hold of the vessel on the present voyage comprised only general cargo, canned goods and the like f no grain or cereals of any kind being stowed in this hold, and on the two previous voyages from Whampoa to various ports in Japan the cargo carried by the vessel comprised only general cargo, steel and trucks, etc., and no grain or cereals were shipped either Hence the Sacks of cassava starch could not be contaminated by rice Weevils during the sea passage. The Respondents further submitted that since no rice weevils were discovered during the discharge at Le Havre, the carrier duly performed its obligation under the bill of lading and, thus, .were not liable for the infestation discovered at Nantes,ⅡTribunal's Opinion
The Tribunal has examined the documentary evidence and submissions of both parties and made a careful study and analysis of the possibility of cargoes being infested during the sea passage.
Mr1 Lucien Herang stated, inter alia，in his Cargo Survey Report issued at Nantes that “mais en aucun cas son (rice weevil ); cycle biologue ne peut se produire dans une farine. En outre, il n’a pas été trauve d’insecteà trove d’insece a I’interieur des sacs, mais uniquementà I’ exterieur. II s agit donc une infestation de 1’ exterieut des embailages, et non d’un vice propre de la farine de manioc qu’ls; contiennent”. On this there is no diver- geacy of opinion betwreeii the parties.
The point at issue is whether the cargo was contaminated by rice weevils during the sea passage, in other words, whether or not the insects existing on； the sacks at the time when the cargo was discharged at Le Havre. The onus lies primarily upon the Claimants of proving that the cargo in question was contaminated by rice; weevils during the sea passage. The submissions for the contamination having occurred on board the vessel is based on the Procesverbal de Constat, No. 5559 jointly signed by the shipagents and the consignees’ agents, which remarked in the bracket “presence de charancons vivants dans la merchandise”.
The Tribunal has examined the documentary evidence submitted by the Claimants. The consignees’ agents stated, inter alia, in their telex No. 2946 to the consignees dated 24th July, 1979 that “suite phones ce matin nous signalantla presence de charancons dans la merchandise, vs confirmons ou a la preception en direct sur wagons les 20 et 21 crt. Nours n’avons pas constate la presence de ce insects”. The consignees’ agents also stated, inter alia, in their letter to the consignees dated 26th July, 1979 that “Comme nous vous 1’ avons confirme par notre teiex No. 2946 du 24 courant, nous n’avons constate aucune trace d’msectes ? la receptioa de ces marchandises”, and that wsur lequel (the Proces-verbal de Constat) nous avons lait mentionner ‘PRESENCE DE CHARANCONS VIVANTS DANS LA MARCHANDISE’ The Tribunal holds that the aforesaid telex and letter from the consignees, agents who first and direct witnessed the condition of the cargo at the time of discharge are of greater weight than the Proces-verbal de Constat signed four days afterwards. Therefore，the Claimants have failed to discharge their onus of proof , and in these circumstances 9 whether the rice weevils originated possibly from the rail wagons is of no decisive significance. The Tribunal would, however, point out that according to the biological cycle of the rice weevils as stated by the Claimants, Surveyor, the possibility of the contamination of cargo by rice weevils in wagons could only be ruled out either by presenting a survey report showing that no insects existed in each wagon prior to taking in the cargo, or by proving that those wagons had not, in a sufficient long period, carried any cargo likely to be contaminated by rice weevils. But the Claimants failed to submit such evidence.
1.The Respondents shall be liable for the shortage of 975 kilos of cassava starch and indemnify the Claimants the sum of FFr. 1 287. 00 plus interest at a rate oi 7% per annum commencing from the date of 21st July, 1979.
2.The Respondents shall not be liable for the contamination by rice weevils of the sacks of cassava starch thus the Claimants’ claim for expenses of fumigation and survey fails.
3.The arbitration fee for the present case is set at…and the actual expenses amount to…, The total sum comes to… of which the Claimants to bear…and the Respondents… The Claimants, having advanced arbitration fee in the sum of… shall pay to the Maritime Arbitration Commission a further sum of…This decision is final.
Peking, May 10, 1983
Maritime Arbitration Commission.