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14-1. INTRODUCTION. The WCA incorporates container documentation into the ocean cargo manifest, which, in turn, is distributed within 5 days after the vessel sails to the overseas POD. To accomplish this task, DOD Regulation 4500.32-R requires those shipping activities making containerized shipments to provide the WCA with a completed DD Form 1384 (TCMD). Also the cargo checker uses the TCMD to record or tally the cargo data. The TCMD is an official document that is signed by the checker as being accurate, used by other individuals to prepare additional documents, and later filed as part of the record. The TCMD may also be used to provide advance notice to the receiving terminal. Cargo checkers are not normally required to prepare TCMDs, so only a general description of some of the code entries is provided in this chapter. A separate TCMD must be prepared for each shipment entering the transportation system. The TCMDs may be machine prepared, as a punch card or an administrative message, or be manually prepared (DD Form 1384).

14-2. SHIPMENT CLEARANCE. The shipment clearance and release instructions are discussed below.

    a. Container shipments require clearance and release instructions in accordance with AR 55-355, Chapter 202, and MILSTAMP. If the shipping activity is unable to meet the POE delivery date established during clearance, they advise the WCA by telephone prior to shipment to get final clearance instructions. Advance TCMDs will be submitted to the WCA as soon as possible, but not later than the following time frames-

    • When the transit time from shipper to the POE is less than 24 hours, submit the TCMD 12 hours prior to the release of the container to the port.
    • When the transit time to the POE is over 24 hours, the TCMD must be submitted prior to the container's release.

    b. The importance of timely TCMD data from the shipper cannot be overemphasized. When documentation is not received at the WCA within the prescribed times one or more of the following may happen-

    • The container may be loaded onto the vessel at the POE but not manifested.
    • In some instances, due to customs requirements, the SEAVAN will not be discharged at the POD because of incomplete documentation.
    • The SEAVAN may be discharged and placed in a holding area awaiting instructions from CONUS.
    • When the WCA receives the outstanding shipper documentation, the WCA must publish a supplement to the basic manifest to cover those SEAVANs not on the original document.
    • Erroneous POD discharge is possible.
    • Additional documentation (cargo outturn reports or reconciliations) may result.

14-3. BASIC DOCUMENTATION. Container documentation reflects data applicable to the SEAVAN and its contents and clearly identifies each shipment unit. The principal document used in the DTS is the DD Form 1384. If any documentation problems come up the shipper should contact the appropriate WCA for assistance.

    a. Under most circumstances, the TCMD or a computer printout of TCMD data is available. The cargo checker may have to record cargo data on a locally produced form. In this section we will explain how to fill out a DD Form 1384. This section is important even if you do not plan to fill one out. By understanding how to prepare it, you will know what the information in each block means. You can refer to the following illustrations to see what it looks like when filled out.

      (1) Block 1. Information required is listed below.

        (a) The DIC is a three-character code which indicates the purpose for which the form is being used (advance TCMD, air manifest, or water manifest documents) or the type of shipment to which it relates. The DIC also specifies the format for additional transportation that is required.

        (b) As an example, Appendix B of MILSTAMP indicates that the letter "T" identifies the form as a MILSTAMP document. The letter "H" in the second position identifies the shipment as household goods. The third character, number 1, indicates that the document is being used as the principal shipping document for a single shipment that does not require clearance approval before shipment.

      (2) Block 2. Information required is listed below.

        (a) When a shipment is moving in a controlled container, MILVAN, or SEAVAN, the last five digits of the container number will be entered in this block.

        (b) For RO/RO containers, the last four digits of the container number will be preceded by an "S" or "V" indicate whether it is a stake-and-flat bed or a van.

        (c) When two or more shipment units are consolidated into a noncontrolled container (a container without permanent serial numbers), the assigned container serial number will be preceded by the shipping service code (A-Army). See Figure 14-1 for further information on filling out the TCMD.

      (3) Block 3. Information required is listed below.

        (a) The coded or in-the-clear address of the shipping installation, unit, or other agency appears in this block.

        (b) This address code should be the same as the one appearing in the FROM block of the military shipment label on the shipping container.

      (4) Block 4. Information required is listed below.

        (a) The information appearing in this block provides a quick means of identifying material for manifesting, customs requirements, stevedore billing, and transportation cost.

Figure 14-1. Sample portion of DD Form 1384; blocks 1, 3, 4

        (b) This information also provides an indication of whether the shipment requires special attention during shipment, handling, or storage.

        (c) The Water Commodity and Special Handling Code is a five- or six-position alpha, alphanumeric, numeric code, or abbreviation used to identify a specific piece of cargo. It tells cargo handlers that there is a special way to handle this particular shipment. The five-character code is developed in the following manner-

        • First three positions-identify the commodity category.
        • Fourth position-shows type of cargo.
        • Fifth position-notes exception/handling procedures.

        (d) The number in block 4 is broken down as noted: Appendix B of MILSTAMP shows that the code 390 identifies the shipment as household goods in a government container. The "Z" in the fifth position indicates that no special handling is required.

        (e) The air commodity code is a two-character code. The first character of the code identifies the commodity.

        (f) The second character indicates any special handling or attention that may be required; if none is needed, the code "Z" "R," "Z," or a numeral, a DD Form 1387-2 (Special Handling Data/Certification) must be attached to the shipment. Cargo checkers and warehousemen can obtain detailed handling instructions by referring to that label.

      (5) Block 5. The air dimension code is used only for shipments moving by aircraft. It identifies the type of cargo aircraft capable of transporting the largest container in the shipment. This code is found in Appendix B of MILSTAMP.

      (6) Block 6. Information required is listed below.

        (a) A POE is an air or ocean terminal at which troops, equipment, or material are loaded aboard aircraft or vessels. Every terminal throughout the world that is used in the transportation of DOD shipments is assigned an identification code. Ocean terminal codes indicate the major geographical area, the sub-area, and the specific port, port area, or island. The list of water port designators found in Appendix B of MILSTAMP indicates the POE code 3DK is located at the Military Ocean Terminal, Bay Area (Oakland, CA).

        (b) Air Terminal Identifier Codes are three-position alpha codes that are used to identify the name and location of an air terminal. For example, the code for McGuire Air Force Base, Wrightstown, NJ, is WRI. See Figure 14-2.

Figure 14-2. Sample portion of DD Form 1384; block 6

      (7) Block 7. The same code system as that used for POEs is used to identify the air or ocean terminal where the shipment is designated to be unloaded (Figure 14-3).

      (8) Block 8. Advance information as to the mode of transportation by which the shipment is arriving will be entered in this block. This information will enable terminal personnel to prepare for arrival of the particular conveyance (Figure 14-3).

      (9) Block 9. Pack refers to the method of packaging a shipment unit or units together. The methods used are indicated by one of the abbreviations listed in the glossary (Figure 14-3).

      (10) Block 10. Information required is listed below.

        (a) Cargo checkers are particularly interested in the TCN, since during the process of checking cargo they must compare this TCN with the TCH entered in the address marking of the container. The comparison of these two numbers is the most effective way of correctly identifying a shipment. The following illustration shows the data contained in a MILSTRIP TCN.

A 2 6 T A M 1 0 9 6 1 0 3 1 X X X
    1         2       3     4 5 6

      1. Activity address code.
      2. Year and Julian date of requisition.
      3. Requisition serial number.
      4. Suffix to requisition when filled by more than one supply agency.
      5. Partial shipment indicator.
      6. Split shipment indicator.

      AK473120940100XAX -- 1st Increment
      AK473120940100XBX -- 2nd Increment
      AK4731209400XZX -- Last Increment

Figure 14-3. Sample portion of DD Form 1384; blocks 7, 8, 9, and 10

        (b) The Department of Defense activity address code is a six-position alphanumeric code which identifies the initiator or requisitioner of supplies.

        (c) The date of requisition is a four-position numeric code showing the date the request of supplies was forwarded to the initial supply source. The first number shows the last numeric digit of the calendar year. The last three numbers show the numeric consecutive day of the calendar year.

        (d) The requisition serial number is a four-digit numeric code assigned by the initiator or requisitioner. Serial numbers are assigned on a daily basis ranging from 0001 to 999.

        (e) A suffix code is a one-digit alpha code assigned to show partial fill of a requisition. If there is no suffix code assigned on the DD Form 1384-1 (Intransit Data Card), an "X" is used in this position.

        (f) The partial shipment code is used by the depot or shipper only. When cargo is moved from a depot or shipper in one truckload, an "X" is used in this position. When the shipment unit requires partial shipment, the TCN for the first increment would have a partial shipment code of "A," the second "B" and so on through the alphabet as required except for "X," because "X" indicates a complete shipment. When shipment codes are used, the last increment of the shipment ends with code "Z."

        (g) The split shipment code is reserved for use by terminal or transshipment activities. The depot or other shipping activities always assign the code "X" to this seventeenth position.

        (h) A non-MILSTRIP TCN is assigned by the origin transportation officer for cargo shipments that are not directed for movement by supply action (household goods, SEAVANs, privately owned vehicles, MILVANs, mail).

        (i) Refer to Appendix D of MILSTAMP for further details on how to construct these TCN numbers. Also, see Figure 14-3.

      (11) Block 11. The consignee is the unit that will receive the cargo. The activity address code entered in this block should be the same as that entered in the TO block of the address marking, or the ULTIMATE CONSIGNEE block if the shipment is going overseas.

      (12) Block 12. The TP entered in this block should be the same as the TP appearing on the address marking.

      (13) Block 13. The RDD is the Julian calendar date by which the shipment must be delivered to the consignee. See Figure 14-4 for further guidance.

Figure 14-4. Sample portion of DD Form 1384; blocks 11, 12, and 13

      (14) Block 14. This block is left blank unless the shipment unit is moving in support of a project which has been assigned a specific identification code. Again, the shipping transportation officer will extract this information from the supply release documents when the TCMD is prepared.

      (15) Block 16. Information required is listed below.

        (a) The Julian date entered in this block is the date the shipment is released to the carrier or the POE when the shipper is located in the vicinity of the POE.

        (b) When the TCMD is for an air shipment, only the last two characters of the Julian calendar are used. They will be preceded by a single-character hour code to indicate the anticipated hour of release to the carrier at the point of origin.

      (16) Block 16. The ETA is actually the estimate of the number of days the shipment will be in transit to the POE.

      (17) Block 17. Military services and other DOD agencies that use the DTS are required to pay for the transportation and terminal services involved in the movement of shipments within the system. Four-character transportation account codes are assigned to these agencies to facilitate shipper identification for cost accounting and billing purposes.

      (18) Block 18. The name of the trucking company, airline, railroad, or ship that moves the cargo is entered in this block. Figure 14-5 contains more information on filling out this block as well as blocks 15-17.

Figure 14-5. Sample portion of DD Form 1384; blocks 15, 16, 17, and 18

      (19) Block 19. The license number of the truck or trailer in which the cargo is loaded is given in this block. If the shipment is to be made by air or vessel, the mission or voyage number is entered. These numbers may be obtained from the Military Sealift Command representative or Military Airlift Command representative. The MILSTAMP provides that entry of this information is optional. However, local policy may dictate that the name of the carrier and vehicle number be placed in these blocks.

      (20) Block 20. The use of this block is optional. It should not include remarks that would apply to the shipment beyond the APOE/POE.

      (21) Block 21. This block is used only when a shipper is providing information which is not applicable to the entire move. For example, if a shipper is advised by the originating carrier that the shipment will be transferred to another truck before its delivery to the POE, the shipper notes this fact in the REMARKS block.

      (22) Block 22. The function of checking cargo basically involves the counting and inspection of each container or item of cargo as it is transferred from one location to another. In order to determine whether there are any overages or shortages, the cargo checker must refer to the number of pieces shown in this block.

      (23) Blocks 23 and 24. The weight and cube shown in these blocks is for the entire shipment unit, unless the shipment unit is moving by more than one vehicle. When a shipment unit is moving in more than one vehicle, only the number of pieces, weight, and cube loaded on the transporting vehicle will be shown. See Figure 14-6 for additional guidance.

Figure 14-6. Sample portion of DD Form 1384; blocks 22-24

      (24) Blocks 25 through 27. This portion of the form is completed by a cargo checker each time the shipment is transferred from one carrier to another, from a carrier to a temporary storage location, or from a temporary storage location to a carrier. The form is designed to accommodate three separate transshipments. The information that the cargo checkers enter in block "a" through "k" is used to prepare manifests, vessel stowage plans, and a number of other documents. Therefore, the cargo checker must thoroughly understand how to record the correct information in the appropriate block. Detailed instructions for completing this portion of the form are provided in the next section.

      (25) Blocks 28 through 31. These blocks are completed by the consignee when the shipment has been delivered. When these blocks have been completed, the consignee will have a record of when the shipment was received and its condition upon arrival. A copy of the completed TCMD, signed by the consignee, may also be given to the delivering carrier as a delivery receipt to verify that the shipment has been completed.

      (26) Columns 32 through 44. This portion of the form is used to provide supplemental information for special categories of shipments. When used for this purpose, the information is referred to as "trailer data" or "header data," depending upon the type of shipment it describes. Trailer data provide additional information for a single shipment unit (described in blocks 1 through 24); header data identify the RP/RO trailer, SEAVAN, or consolidation container in which the shipment is moving. When mechanically-prepared punch card TCMDs are used as prime documents, the supplemental information must be entered on separate punch cards. These supplemental cards accompany the prime document (TCMD) and are referred to as "trailer" or "header" cards. When the manually prepared TCMD is used as a prime document, these cards are not required. The MILSTAMP Appendix B identifies the data in these blocks as personal property ownership data.

    c. Copies of the TCMD (advance copy already submitted to WCA), or similar documentation containing TCMD data for each enclosed shipment, will be forwarded in the SEAVAN. Copies are to be placed in a waterproof envelope labeled LOAD LIST and securely attached to the inside of the loading door.

    d. Vans are moved to the loading terminal on bills of lading or TCMDs as prescribed in MILSTAMP. When a TCMD or similar nonnegotiable document is used, a signed copy is kept by the shipper to record acceptance by the originating carrier. Also, the shipper gives one copy of the bill of lading, TCMD, or other document to the originating line-haul carrier with instructions to give it to the gate checker, guard, or other representative of the ocean carrier upon delivery of the container at the ocean carrier's container yard.

    e. The shipper is responsible for any documentation peculiar to the cargo and the attachment of these documents to the container.

CAUTION: Export cargo can be easily damaged en route if the required documentation is incomplete or inaccurate and is not forwarded or received by the WCA in a timely manner. Since the TCMD is the source document permitting accurate and timely receipt/lift data and ocean manifesting, its importance cannot be overemphasized.

14-4. TALLYING CONTAINERS. Cargo tallying provides a continuing record of the container from the time the container is unloaded from the ship until it is shipped from the marshaling area. To accomplish this, checkers are normally stationed at any or all of the following locations:

  • Each working shipside crane (transfer point between ship and transporter).
  • Each hatch or cell being worked.
  • Transfer point between lighterage and land transporter (LOTS operation).
  • In the marshaling area where containers are placed in, or removed from, the container stack; each container stuffing/stripping operation; and the yard entry/exit point.

    a. Incoming Containers. To tally incoming containers, these steps must be followed-

      (1) The cargo checker at the stuffing and stripping location receives a DD Form 1384 for the container and DD Form 1384 for all the cargo in the container. The cargo checker will also receive a container content discharge tally list, which may be a DD Form 1384, a computer printout or a locally produced form. If using a DD Form 1384, fill out the following columns-

      • Serial Page Number. Enter the page number from the block in the upper right corner of each TCMD for each TCN or shipment unit.
      • Pier Location. Enter the BBP yard location.
      • Time. Enter the time the container is stripped.
      • Tally Date. Enter the Julian date.
      • Piece Count. Enter a stroke tally (for example, 1/) to verify the number in the MAN PCS (manifested pieces) column of the tally list.

      (2) Any discrepancies between the manifested pieces and the actual pieces in the container are noted by pen-and-ink changes to the tally list so that the tally shows the actual number of pieces received.

      (3) The TCMDs are also annotated with the following data-

      • Block 25a. Enter BBP.
      • Block 25b. Enter the date the cargo was received at the BBP.
      • Block 25c. Enter the BBP warehouse or yard location of the cargo after it is staged.

      (4) When clearance transport arrives to pick up cargo from the BBP, the checker makes the following entries on the TCMD:

      • Block 29. Enter the date shipped (for instance, the day the cargo was released to the consignee).
      • Block 30. Optional use.
      • Block 31. Get signature of individual receiving the cargo and put down any optional remarks. Also, pull a copy of the TCMD for the documentation element.

    Step 1. The documentation element gives the chief cargo checker a discharge tally list for the containers to be tallied from the ship. If an automated system is not available, DD Forms 1384 may be used.

    Step 2. The chief cargo checker distributes these documents to the appropriate checkers, who then use them as tally sheets. As a container comes off the ship, the checker compares the container serial number with that shown on the tally list (or DD Form 1384, as appropriate). If the serial numbers agree, the checker places a check mark on the tally beside the number. If a lifted container is not aboard the ship, the checker notes this fact opposite the container list number. The checker notes opposite the listed container number such irregularities as-

    • Damage to the container or its contents.
    • Broken or missing seals or locks, or indication of tampering or pilferage.
    • A container seal number differing from that shown on the tally document.

    Step 3. Cargo checkers record on the tally list serial numbers of containers unloaded from the ship that are not included on the discharge tally list or that have no DD Form 1384. When the container is relocated, the new location is entered in the DD Form 1384.

    Step 4. At the end of the shift, cargo checkers meet the chief cargo checker to iron out any discrepancies. The chief then prepares a consolidated tally list which is turned in to the documentation element.

      (5) At the end of each shift, all cargo checkers from that shift meet with the chief cargo checker to compare tally lists and to reconcile any discrepancies between the tally sheets and they physical count. Based on data derived from the tally lists, the chief cargo checker prepares a consolidated discharge list which he turns in together with the TCMDs to the documentation section.

    b. Containers in a Marshaling Yard. For containers arriving at the marshaling yard from shipside, the cargo checker verifies the container serial number against that shown on the discharge tally list and makes the appropriate entries as to yard location in blocks "25," "26," and "27" of the DD Form 1384. After the cargo checker has signed the DD Forms 1384, they are filed in a TCMD marshaling yard file until the container is ready to be cleared from the yard, or is relocated in the yard.

    c. Container Stuffing and Stripping. Container stuffing and stripping is accomplished primarily at the consignee/consignor area. It will be necessary, however, to perform some stuffing and stripping service at the water terminal (marshaling area).


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