Common Carriers: Summary notes

Common Carriers

The law recognizes two types of carriers  common and private. A common carrier is one who holds himself out to the public as being ready to carry their goods from place to place, either by land or water for a fee. A common carrier is bound to carry all goods or passengers)offered to him by persons willing to pay his fee unless he has no room in his vehicle or the goods offered are not of the kind he professes to carry or if the destination is not one to which he usually travels.

A common carrier is an insurer of the goods entrusted to him and is liable for their loss or damage in the absence of a special agreement or statutory exemption. However, he is not liable if the loss is due to

  1. An act of God,
  2. Act of the Republic’s enemy,
  3. Negligence of the owner of the goods due to defective packing , or inherent vice.

A private carrier is one who reserves the right to pick and choose his customers; and his liability is governed by the terms of the contract. Generally, a private carrier will not be liable for loss to goods in the absence of negligence on his part.

Duties of Common Carrier

  1.  To accept and carry goods of any person on payment of the fee provided there is a room in his vehicle.
  2. to carry goods to his customary manner without unnecessary  delay or deviation.
  3. To deliver the goods on the completion of the transit to the consignee within a reasonable time.
  4. He is an insurer of goods accepted by him for onward journey and is or not.liable to make goods all loss or damage, whether caused by his negligence

Charter Parties

A charter party is a contract whereby a shipowner places his ship, or part of it, at the disposal of the charterer for the conveyance of goods for the duration of one or more voyages or for a definite period of times in con­sideration of a sum called the freight.

Bill of Lading

A bill of lading is a document signed by the shipowner, his mas­ter or other agent, then handed to the shipper, stating that goods of a given des­cription have been shipped on a certain vessel (ship). It sets out the terms on which the goods have been delivered to and received by the ship owner.

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