More than 160 guests and 17 countries as well as innumerable international companies get involved at the EUMOS Symposium every 2 years to learn about current research & development in cargo securing and to exchange thoughts on the topic.
Presentations are given by international experts who are confronted with the topic daily in their capacity as lawyers, scientists or entrepreneurs.
Once again, there were 4 worthy winners of the EUMOS Award 2017, who were honoured in style at the Bristol Hotel in Vienna.
In September 2017, top experts from all over the world met in Vienna for the 5th time to debate current research findings, difficulties and ideas on the topic of cargo securing and transport packaging. This year, the role of host was played by the Austrian Economic Chambers.
EUMOS (European Safe Logistics Association) is a non-profit organisation which for years has been a practice-oriented agent for improving transparency on the safety standards in European transport policy. The organisation now encompasses more than 16 represented countries. Each year, numerous additional members join. Especially the eastern part of Europe will be even more strongly represented in future.
Trust in cargo securing through apps
Cargo securing is a topic that needs to involve everyone in order to achieve long-term improvement, and this is emphasised by the EUMOS slogan “Europa move it safe”, says Wolfgang Neuman, founder and president of EUMOS. Here, the values of safety and transparency are given utmost importance for making standards and regulations actionable in a practice-oriented way – standards which need to be represented through the development of generally intelligible guidelines. At the same time, it is necessary to promote process-optimised procedures which are verified through test series, calculations and statistics, findings and information. All formulas, the use of high tech and the possibilities of digitisation apart, it is however clear that a transfer of responsibility to those who ultimately ensure implementation or make decisions about the sufficiency or insufficiency of the securing of cargo on-site can only be guaranteed through trust. In the future, apps are supposed to be made available for this purpose, to help drivers and loading agents to quickly check standards, or to consult their superiors for an opinion by quickly photographing the loading space.
Wolfgang Neumann, President of EUMOS, Dr Stefan Ebner, Vice President of EUMOS and General Secretary Arnaud Dupasquier took turns moderating the two-day Symposium. Apart from interesting presentations, there was also a lot of space for discussions and questions. There was no shortage of networking in the breaks, and some of the invited companies also exhibited innovative products and were available for questions. Apart from experts from universities and technical institutes, the guests included to join the discussion also included representatives of the police, manufacturers, logistics companies and truck drivers, meaning that a comprehensive perspective on the underlying topic was made possible.
Besides discussions that were held on a high level in technical areas, there were also emotional discussions, as the driving force for the communication between all parties involved was the improvement of safety on Europe’s transport routes in a competitively viable and sustainable way. The shockingly high number of road traffic casualties recorded each day throughout Europe needs to be met preventatively with clear, Europe-wide laws and guidelines, as well as the training of persons faced with actual practice. In doing this, it is also necessary to look to the approaching future of a completely digitised economy, which includes discussions about self-driving vehicles and multimedia transport routes.
Uniformity throughout Europe to support the economy
The vague legislative texts and directives about cargo securing were approached in a decided manner. The experts here referred mainly to the EN Standards (EN12195- 1: 2010, EN 12642-03:2017, EN 12642 XL, among others). The confusion resulting from further directives and recommendations, such as the VDI guidelines or the CTU Code 2014, was made obvious. In this context, the code created by EUMOS (EUMOS 40509:2012) is a helpful supplement to the jungle of guidelines. It became clear that the legislative texts are too imprecise in their formulations and, in their deficient translations, partially ambiguous. This is where the transparency that needs to be created is missing. In order to simplify international transport routes, a uniform legislation is being developed which is to apply to all of Europe and potentially even beyond those limits. Only in this way can efficiency be increased and the transport routes secured eloquently.
There were many interesting contributions, which presented problems in a solution-oriented manner, mainly by way of various practical examples. During this, different perspectives on the topic were raised. The federal police and police services explained their view as inspectors of cargo units, and their often-startling examples caused some incredulous laughter and some concerned silence in the audience. And the many companies reporting their personal experience also showed the manifold situations in which one can find oneself within the topic of safe logistics. Apart from numerous valuable tricks and tips, partial aspects such as packaging with foil or the securing of cargo units through lashing methods and the associated products were also put into focus. Scientists and manufacturers presented the latest results of their research.
Besides the know-how of everyday working life, new technical calculation approaches were also presented, for example by Dr Kamil Klonecki from the TU Darmstadt or Prof Marc Juwet from the KU Leuven in Belgium. Dr Bernhard Haid, an Austrian lawyer, elucidated the legal consequences of accidents where the responsibility was divided between packager, loading agent and driver – a whole chain of transport which is supposed to be responsible for cargo safety. Dr Dieter-Lebrecht Koch, who as a Member of the European Parliament could unfortunately not be present in person, took part in the form of a video address and explained the goals of the European Commission.
Companies such as EUROSAFE, FCE-ARRIMAGE, CRTL, SALTIGO, RUD, ASSECURE, ATLANTIC PACKAGING, WINDMÖLLER & HÖLSCHER, PETSCHL TRANSPORTE, VALUEING and ITENE introduced themselves, associations and federal instances such as EUMOS, the European PARLIAMENT, the WKO (Austrian Economic Chambers), the POLICE, TÜV-NORD, and PORT OF ROTTERDAM were all represented by speakers.
In the evening, all participants of the Symposium were invited to an elegant gala dinner at the Hotel Bristol in Vienna, made possible by the main sponsor, Dow Chemical Ibérica (Spain). Accentuated by traditional Vienna Schrammel music and a well-balanced menu, the winners of the EUMOS Awards 2017, who had stood out in particular through their initiative, commitment or their research on the topic of cargo securing and safe logistics, were presented with their awards. Those honoured were Prof Marc Juwet from the KU Leuven in Belgium, Alfred Lampen, retired Police Superintendent from Rastede in Germany, Antonio Manrique of Dow Chemical Ibérica in Spain and Dr Kamil Klonecki, former testing specialist from the TU Darmstadt in Hessen.
The Symposium gave an impetus to no longer see packaging options as separate from the topic of cargo securing. Furthermore, the existing guidelines are insufficient and additionally are subject to different interpretations in the respective national laws. Generally applicable regulations must be found, which define responsibilities more clearly through simplification and transparency, and optimise and standardise the entire transport process. Equally, it is necessary to achieve sustainability and fairness in the packaging and loading process, and not least to better inform the loading agents and truck drivers about their rights and responsibilities. They must be shown possibilities for how they can and are allowed to act in the case of doubt or emergency. For this purpose, small and midsize companies in Europe must also successively be involved in the discussions, as the implementation of new and improved guidelines affects them just as much. The political demand for a generally applicable legal framework, along with the vitally necessary, targeted education and training of those who are affected in working practice, was the clear focus of the Symposium.
After two days of fascinating facts, interesting perspectives, curious questions, great inventions and developments, fantastic products and an all-round exchange of know-how between practitioners and theoreticians, it was clear how much movement EUMOS has been able to cause in the area of cargo securing over the past two years. Wolfgang Neumann called on the international guests to continue the exchange, so that someday not a single traffic casualty in Europe would be counted. Only when people engage in discussion with each other can efficient progress be guaranteed, which in no way seeks to wipe out traditions, but rather to unify them. “The topic must be lived, all of us must look to the future to advance in a targeted way”, he said at the end, and for exactly this reason, the EUMOS International Symposium was once again a great success this year. Further information will be published in the coming months at www.eumos.eu.
Verkehr + AirCargo 38/2017