General Principles 基本原则
1.21 The reason why ﬁxed laytime charters are preferred is probably because of their greater certainty when it comes to estimating the permitted length of a charter and because they offer more ﬂexibility by the use of exception clauses in varying the apportionment of risk.
1.22 Whichever form of laytime is chosen, voyage charters are also divided up into berth, dock and port charters, depending on which of these three alternatives is chosen as the speciﬁed destination for loading or discharging, as the case may be. There is no reason why a charter should not be, say, a berth charter for loading and a port charter for discharging. In general, however, laytime commences upon the vessel’s arrival at the speciﬁed destination, notice of readiness having been given (if required) and after any time provided for in the charter has elapsed. Upon laytime commencing, liability for delay may change from the shipowner to the charterer, depending on the terms of the charter. This is why it is important to be able to establish precisely when the speciﬁed destination is reached. Berth and dock charters on the whole create few problems in this respect, since it is comparatively easy to say whether a vessel has reached its berth or dock. The port charter is, however, more difﬁcult. Until the decision of the Court of Appeal in Leonis Steamship Co v. Rank, the law was in some confusion, but in that case the court held that in a port charter, the speciﬁed destination was reached when the vessel arrived in the commercial area of the port and not, as some of the earlier cases had suggested, when the vessel actually arrived in berth. Later, difﬁculties arose in deciding what the Court of Appeal had meant and what factors had to be taken into account before it could be decided whether the usual waiting place was within the commercial area of the port. These were resolved by the House of Lords in The Johanna Oldendorff, where Lord Reid laid down what has subsequently become known as ‘‘the Reid test’’.
Before a ship can be said to have arrived at a port she must, if she cannot proceed immediately to a berth, have reached a position within the port where she is at the immediate and effective disposition of the charterer.
The presumption is that, if the vessel concerned is at a place where waiting ships of that type usually lie and this is within the port, then she is at the ‘‘immediate and effective disposition of the charterer’’.
1.22 无论选用那一种装卸时间形式，按照所指定的装卸货物目的港究竟是泊位、码头还是港口，航次租船合同也按照具体情况可分为泊位租船合同，码头租船合同和港口租船合同。这里没有理由为什么一份租船合同不应该，比如说，对于装货是泊位租船合同，而对于卸货却是港口租船。但是，一般地，一旦船舶抵达指定的目的地，已经递交了装卸准备就绪通知书（如果有要求的话），并且在租船合同中所规定的某段间已经过去之后，装卸时间便随即开始。装卸时间一经开始，根据租船合同条款，延迟的责任便可能由船东转移到承租人。这也就是为什么能够精确地确定何时抵达指定目的地之非常重要的原因。总的说来，泊位租船合同和码头租船合同在这方面极少产生什么问题，因它相比相对来说比较容易确定船舶是否已经到达了它的泊位或码头。但是，港口租船合同在这方面要困难得多。直到上诉法院对Leonis Steamship Co v. Rank—案作出判决之前，法律仍有些模糊不清，但是，在那个案件中，法院判定，在港口租船合同的情况下，只要船舶到达了指定港口的商业区域即是已经抵达指定的目的地，而不是像以前某些案例曾经一直建议的要等到船舶实际到达泊位时才算抵达达了指定的目的地。此后，在确定通常的等泊地点是否位于港口的商业区域范围内之前，判断上诉法院所指的含义究竟是什么以及必须要考虑哪些因素时，便生了难题。这些难题在上议院The Johanna Oldendorff一案的审理中得以解决。Reid勋爵在该案中确立了后来人们称之为的‘Reid准则’，即：
1.23 It is, however, open to the parties to advance the time when laytime commences or to provide in some other way for time to count earlier than would be the case under the normal rules. In the case of a berth charter, the parties may agree that time should count ‘‘whether in berth or not’’, thus advancing commencement of time when the delay is due to congestion.Similarly, the parties may wish to allow time to start as soon as the vessel ceases to be underway, even if still outside the port limits.
1.24 Once laytime has commenced to run it may nevertheless be suspended either by an interruption or an exception to laytime. The difference between these terms, as used in this book, is that an interruption to laytime excludes periods outside the deﬁnition of laytime as expressed in the laytime clause. Excepted periods are within the deﬁnition, but expressly excluded. Adverse weather would be an interruption to laytime expressed in weather working days, but a clause excluding time lost by strikes would be an exception. The principal difference lies in the fact that, with an interruption, it is only necessary to show that the excluded state of affairs exists, but with an exception, it is necessary to show a causal connection between what is excluded and the failure to work cargo.
1.25 As Lord Diplock also pointed out in The Johanna Oldendorff :
In the case of maritime carriage this rule (as to absolute liability) was subject to the exception that performance was excused if it were prevented by Act of God or of the King’s enemies or by inherent vice in the goods carried. At a very early date it became usual to incorporate in charterparties express exceptions for other maritime perils, and in modern charterparties these have been extended to strikes and other hindrances to performance which take place on land.
1.25正如Diplock勋爵在The Johanna Oldendorff案中所指出：
1.26 Once commenced, laytime will continue to run until loading (or discharging) has been completed, or until it expires, if these operations are not ﬁnished earlier. In the tanker trade, it is usual to deﬁne completion in terms of disconnection of hoses.
1.27 The laytime allowed may be a single period covering both loading and discharging, or the charter may provide for separate calculations for each. In the event of the latter, provision may be made for the transfer of unused laytime from loading to the time allowed for discharge, or vice versa. The different methods by which this can be achieved are referred to as averaging and reversing.
1.28 In certain trades, e.g. the parcel tanker trade, a vessel may be under a number of different charters at the same time, each covering part of the cargo.
魏长庚船长：1996-2000 年在大连海事大学学习，获得航海技术专业学士学位。具有16年海上船舶航行经验，魏长庚船长一直热爱海商法（重点是英国海商法）的学习，并致力海商法的翻译工作（包括Informa出版的Bill of Lading（提单），Laytime and Demurrage（装卸时间与滞期费）等书籍