Spillage prevention in bulk handling

During the handling of bulk solid materials, some material is spilled e.g. due to leakage from a grab. This material might end up on the bottom, in the water or in the air, and can be harmful for the environment. In Europe the regulations and legislation on environmental issues is getting very strict. This has lead to discussions between Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water Management and stevedores to what extent measurements to prevent spillage should be taken.

The objective of the research is to develop a tool to be used by both the Ministry and the stevedores to determine the urgency of taking measurements for specific bulk materials and spillage situations. To achieve that the following two questions have to be answered:

  1. What is the amount of spillage that occurs during grab operations. In literature hardly any figures are available on the amount of spillage that occurs during unloading with grabs. Therefore it is necessary to gain experimental data in order to quantify the spillage.
  2. What is the influence of the spilled product on the water quality, or in other words, what is the aquatic harmfulness of the bulk solids.

The end date for the project is mid 2009.


We would like to thank ACTransPort (www.actransport.nl) for their financial support that enabled us to carry out this research. In addition we would like to thank the companies Corus, EBS, EECV, EMO, EP Shipping, Erasmus University, IGMA, Maja, Marcor, NIEMA, OBA, OVET, RBT, Rietlanden, Syntens and ZHD for enabling this research by both financial and knowledge input.