Terms and conditions

CONDITIONS OF CARRIAGE NORTHLINK FERRIES
As from 1 October 2016

YOUR ATTENTION IS DRAWN TO THESE CONDITIONS WHICH YOU SHOULD READ PRIOR TO MAKING A RESERVATION OR ENTERING INTO ANY CONTRACT WITH NORTHLINK FERRIES

Notices:

  • These Conditions of Carriage (“the Conditions”) of Serco Ltd operating as NorthLink Ferries (”NorthLink Ferries”) are incorporated within and form part of any and all contracts of carriage entered into with NorthLink Ferries.
  • A number of policies, including those referred to in the Conditions are available on the NorthLink Ferries website at www.northlinkferries.co.uk. Passengers should ensure they are familiar will all policies which are relevant for their reservation.
  • The liability of NorthLink Ferries for the carriage of Passengers, Luggage and vehicles is restricted and in certain circumstances excluded. Passengers are directed to sections 12 – 15 of the Conditions in particular.
  • The liability of NorthLink Ferries for the carriage of Goods, Unaccompanied Vehicles and livestock is restricted and in certain circumstances excluded. Shippers are directed to sections 16 – 17 of the Conditions in particular.
  • Those making reservation for a group of Passengers are directed to the terms of section 5 in particular.
  • You are advised to consider the need for and purchase insurance as appropriate taking into account these Conditions.
  • Any policy or other Northlink Ferries document referred to in these Conditions are available on the NorthLink Ferries website and in accessible formats by request.

1. Definitions

In these Conditions:-

(a) ”the Athens Convention” means the Convention relating to the Carriage of Passengers and their Luggage by Sea adopted at Athens in 1974 as modified and re-enacted, or Regulation (EC) No 392/2009 of the European Parliament of the Council of 23 April 2009 on the Liability of Carriers of Passengers by Sea in the Event of Accidents, whichever is applicable to the particular contract of carriage with NorthLink Ferries. The Athens Convention provides a liability regime for passenger ships with regard to passengers and their luggage. There are financial limits of liability for carriers in respect of claims brought by passengers.

(b) “Commercial Vehicle” means, when accompanied by a driver: (i) buses, lorries, vans, commercial trailers and any other vehicles typically used for the carriage of goods or with the carriage of fare paying customers; and (ii) any other vehicle taken onto a Vessel for or in connection with any trade or business.

(c) “Customer Service Centre” means the team at NorthLink Ferries dedicated to reservations and other customer queries. They can be contacted by telephone on 0845 6000 449 or 01856 885500, by email to info@northlinkferries.co.uk or by post to NorthLink Ferries, Ferry Road, Stromness, Orkney, KW16 3BH, United Kingdom.

(d) “Customer Services Department” means the team at NorthLink Ferries dedicated to handling customer care issues including (but not limited to) claims relating to the Athens Convention, the Hague Visby Rules and the Passenger Rights Regulations. They can be contacted by telephone on 0845 6000 449 or 01856 885500, by email to customerservicesdepartment@northlinkferries.co.uk or by post to Customer Services Department, NorthLink Ferries, Ferry Road, Stromness, Orkney, KW16 3BH, United Kingdom.

(e) “Goods” means any articles, items and substances except Luggage, Commercial Vehicles, Unaccompanied Vehicles, other vehicles or livestock;

(f) ”the Hague Visby Rules” means the Rules contained in the International Convention for Unification of Certain Rules relating to Bills of Lading signed at Brussels on 25th August 1924, as amended by the Protocol to amend the said Convention signed at Brussels on 23rd February 1968. The Hague Visby Rules impose duties upon the carriers of goods by sea relating to the care of those goods, and in return allow those carriers to limit their liability in respect of any loss or damage to the goods.

(g) “Luggage” means any articles, items, pet animals or vehicles (excluding Commercial Vehicles) accompanied by a Passenger and carried by NorthLink Ferries under a contract of carriage, excluding:-

  • any Commercial Vehicle;
  • any item of Goods and/or Unaccompanied Vehicle (whether or not a Commercial Vehicle) carried under a consignment note issued by NorthLink Ferries; and/or
  • livestock.

(h) “Owner” means the person who holds himself out to be the person for whom the relevant contract for the carriage of Luggage, Goods, Commercial Vehicles, Unaccompanied Vehicles or livestock is made with NorthLink Ferries and shall include any employee, representative, agent, contractors or sub-contractors of any such person.

(i) “Passenger” means any person travelling on a Vessel whether or not a boarding pass is issued to that person and any person who is entitled to use the Services without charge.;

(j) “The Passenger Rights Regulation” means EU Regulation No 1177/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 24 November 2010 concerning the rights of passengers when travelling by sea and inland waterways and amending Regulation (EC) No 2006/2004, which came into force on 18 December 2012, and applies to passengers travelling on NorthLink Ferries’ Vessels. It establishes the right of such passengers to information and assistance in cases of cancelled or delayed departures and lays down the right, in certain circumstances, to re-routing or reimbursement in the event of cancelled or delayed departures or compensation in the event of delay in arrival.

(k) “Services” means the services offered by NorthLink Ferries in providing the carriage by sea of Passengers, Luggage, Commercial Vehicles and other vehicles, and the shipment and carriage of any Goods, Unaccompanied Vehicles or livestock in return for payment

(l) “Shipper” means a shipper of Luggage, Goods, vehicles and/or livestock on any Vessel;

(m) “Unaccompanied Vehicle” means any vehicle or trailer which is unaccompanied by a person and is carried under a consignment note by NorthLink Ferries.

(n) ”Vessel” means any ship, vessel or ferry owned by, chartered to or hired or used by NorthLink Ferries in respect of the Services.

2. Application of these Conditions of Carriage

(a) All contracts entered into with NorthLink Ferries in relation to the Services shall be subject to these Conditions.

(b) These Conditions shall apply from the time of entering into a contract with NorthLink Ferries, and at all times during the Services, including all loading and unloading operations and all other periods when Passengers, Luggage, Commercial Vehicles, Goods, Unaccompanied Vehicles or livestock remain on any vessel or other property owned or operated by NorthLink Ferries.

(c) NorthLink Ferries will issue a boarding pass or consignment note in respect of the Services. If any goods, vehicles or livestock are carried without a boarding pass or a consignment note being issued, these Conditions shall apply in respect of the Services in any event.

(d) No variation of these Conditions shall be of any effect unless duly authorised in writing on behalf of NorthLink Ferries.

(e) If any provision of these Conditions shall to any extent be invalid, illegal or unenforceable, the validity, legality and enforceability of the remaining provisions shall not be in any way affected or impaired and each of the provisions of these Conditions shall be valid, legal and enforceable to the fullest extent permitted by law.

3. Governing Law

These Conditions and any contracts of carriage entered into by Passengers and Shippers with NorthLink Ferries shall be governed by the law of Scotland (including, but not limited to, any
international convention, protocol, code or order incorporated into the law in force in Scotland) and the Scottish courts shall have exclusive jurisdiction in respect of any dispute arising from these Conditions or any such contracts of carriage.

4. Ticketing and Boarding Conditions

All reservations made and boarding passes issued by NorthLink Ferries are subject to the following provisions, and also to such restrictions and changes as may from time to time be published by NorthLink Ferries (which are available on the NorthLink Ferries website).

(a) Prices – Rates shall be available on the NorthLink Ferries website.

(b) Reservations:

  • NorthLink Ferries shall not take reservations for any Services without prior payment for those Services. The issue of a quotation is not a guarantee of future availability.
  • Only one reservation per vehicle per direction per day shall be accepted.
  • NorthLink Ferries reserves the right to charge an administration fee prior to changing any reservation.
  • Where a booking is made for a return journey and there is a failure to check-in for the outward sailing, the booking in respect of the return sailing shall be cancelled.

(c) Booking confirmation number: NorthLink Ferries does not issue tickets. Passengers will be issued with a unique booking confirmation number upon booking. This must be presented at check-in in return for a boarding pass.

(d) Non-transferability: Bookings made and boarding passes issued are not transferable.

(e) Presentation of boarding pass: All Passengers must be in possession of a valid boarding pass at the time of boarding which they shall exhibit if so requested.

(f) Latest Check-in Time: The deadlines for checking-in for Passengers, vehicles and Commercial Vehicles are published by NorthLink Ferries from time to time in respect of each route. Failure to check-in timeously may lead to the Passenger and/or vehicle being refused carriage.

(g) Proof of Identity: NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled in its absolute discretion to refuse to carry any Passenger unable to produce satisfactory photographic proof of his or her identity.

(h) Refusal of carriage: NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled in its absolute discretion to refuse to carry any Passenger notwithstanding that such Passenger is in receipt of a valid boarding pass.

(i) Cancellation charges: Bookings may be cancelled by contacting the Customer Service Centre. The following cancellation charges will apply:

  • 5% of total booking value if cancelled more than 6 weeks prior to sailing
  • 20% of total booking value if cancelled 6 weeks or less prior to sailing
  • 50% of total booking value if cancelled 2 weeks or less prior to sailing
  • 100% of total booking value if not cancelled prior to the opening of check-in.

(j) Lost/Mislaid Boarding passes: NorthLink Ferries is under no obligation to replace lost boarding passes or make any reimbursement to Passengers in respect of lost boarding passes or of any sum which may be charged in consequence of the Passenger’s failure to produce a valid boarding pass when required.

(k) Sleeping Berths: Passengers holding sleeping berth reservations may be required to vacate cabin accommodation prior to arrival at the destination. NorthLink Ferries will advise upon boarding.

(l) Travelling with Children: Children under the age of 16 years must be accompanied by an adult. For the consideration of fellow passengers, it is not permitted to book children below the age of 4 years into shared cabins or sleeping pods.

(m) Travelling with Pets/Unaccompanied Pets: With the exception of support dogs, animals must not be taken into internal public areas of the vessel including cabins. Kennel facilities are available onboard, which should be booked in advance and are subject to availability. Passengers are responsible for providing a bowl, blanket and any other items required for their pet. Unaccompanied pets may be left in the kennel facilities, where they will remain for the duration of the journey. Further details including the rules relating to embarkation/disembarkation with pets and access to the kennel facility during sailing are contained within the Travelling with Pets policy which is available on the NorthLink Ferries website.

(n) Validation of non-commercial tarriff: NorthLink Ferries reserves the right to conduct an inspection of vehicles booked on domestic or reduced commercial rates for the purposes of validating that tariff.

5. Group bookings

(a) Where a single booking is made in respect of a number of Passengers travelling in a group, the person who made the booking warrants that he has authority to and does contract with NorthLink Ferries as agent for and on behalf of all the Passengers in the group travelling on that booking. All such Passengers shall thus have contracted with NorthLink Ferries subject to these Conditions.

(b) Where a booking is made by a third party in the course of a business or other commercial activity, the person who made the booking shall indemnify NorthLink Ferries in respect of any loss or damage sustained by NorthLink Ferries through any deliberate or negligent act or omissions of any Passenger travelling on that booking.

(c) Any person making a booking for a group of Passengers or any person making a booking for a third party must provide the name and contact details of the individual Passengers travelling in the group to NorthLink Ferries when requested to do so at any time.

6. Disabled Passengers

(a) NorthLink Ferries recognise that accessibility is an issue for a wide range of Passengers with disabilities and provides assistance on the majority of its Vessels for disabled Passengers and those with reduced mobility.

(b) The Accessibility Policy for the carriage of disabled Passengers and those with reduced mobility is available on the NorthLink Ferries website.

(c) Should Passengers require additional assistance, it is requested that notice is given to NorthLink Ferries during the booking process and that notice is again given when checking in.

(d) Any discounts which NorthLink Ferries may from time to time allow will only be given on presentation of such documentation as NorthLink Ferries may require.

(e) Any policies or other Northlink Ferries documentation referred to in these conditions will be provided in accessible formats upon request.

7. Variations with regard to sailing

(a) NorthLink Ferries carries Passengers in accordance with the provisions of the Passenger Rights Regulation. In the event of a delay in departure of or cancellation of a sailing NorthLink Ferries shall provide information and assistance and advise of the right, in certain circumstances, to re-routing or reimbursement in terms of the Passenger Rights Regulations. The obligations of NorthLink Ferries to Passengers shall be limited to those to which it is subject under The Passenger Rights Regulation.

(b) Although NorthLink Ferries will make every reasonable effort to carry Passengers and their Luggage or ship any Goods, vehicle or livestock in the first available Vessel or on a particular day or on a particular route or at a specific time, NorthLink Ferries shall be under no obligation to do so.

(c) Vessels may require to sail on any day or at any other time not specified in any advertisement, timetable or notice.

(d) Vessels may require to call at various ports in any order on either the outward or the return journey; and/or call at, or off, or may stay at, any intermediate port, whether on or off the customary route, for any reasonable purpose and whether or not such calling is mentioned in any advertisement, sailing schedule or notice.

(e) In matters beyond the control of NorthLink Ferries, including but not limited to weather or sea conditions which risks the safe operation of the Vessel, strikes, the congestion or closure of ports, perils of the sea, defects in or break down of machinery or the Vessel, absence of full facilities for loading, unloading or delivery, NorthLink Ferries shall have the right at any time before or after the commencement of the voyage to cancel, abandon or suspend the voyage, alter, vary or depart from the proposed or advertised or agreed or customary route, delay or detain the Vessel, disembark, and forward, land or store or otherwise account for (as appropriate), Luggage, Goods, vehicles and livestock at any port or place.

(f) NorthLink Ferries or the master of the Vessel shall have the liberty, acting reasonably, to comply with any orders, directions or advice given by any government or other authority or by any persons having the right to do so under the terms of any insurance taken out by NorthLink Ferries. Compliance with any such orders, directions or advice shall not prejudice NorthLink Ferries’ entitlement to receive or retain fares and freight for the affected Services.

8. Carriage of luggage and goods

(a) Passengers are permitted only to carry hand-luggage required for their voyage onto the Vessel. Passengers are required to leave large items in either their vehicle or in storage on the luggage trolleys for loading onto the Vessel during the voyage. Such luggage trolleys or any other similar equipment used for the carriage of luggage must not be moved by Passengers without the permission of Northlink Ferries staff.

(b) The maximum weight of Luggage which is permitted to be stored on the luggage trolleys is 30kg per Passenger. Irregular sized items or those in excess of 30kg will be carried only at the discretion of NorthLink Ferries and may be subject to an additional charge. Notice of the intention to carry such items must be notified to the Customer Service Centre at the time of booking.

(c) NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled in its absolute discretion, to refuse to carry any vehicle or luggage and/or to receive or ship any item of goods, vehicle and/or livestock notwithstanding that it may previously have agreed to carry, receive or ship the same.

(d) Whilst NorthLink Ferries permits the carriage of vehicles with roof-racks, roof boxes or bicycle racks, operational reasons may require that drivers remove them prior to embarkation and for the duration of the carriage if requested to do so by NorthLink Ferries. The maximum permitted height of a vehicle, inclusive of any roof box, roof boxes or bicycle racks is 2.4 metres.

(e) All Commercial Vehicles or trailers over 6 metres long and/or over 3.5 metric tonnes in weight presented for shipment must be fitted with suitable lashing points in compliance with the Department of Transport’s Code of Practice for the Storage and Securing of Vehicles and ISO 9367. Lashing Guidelines are available on the NorthLink Ferries website. If lashing points are found to be defective or unsuitable the trailer and/or Commercial Vehicle may be refused shipment at the absolute discretion of NorthLink Ferries. There shall be no requirement for NorthLink Ferries to reimburse the freight paid nor any other costs incurred resulting from the refusal to ship.

(f) NorthLink Ferries provides a service for the carriage of bulk bags. The Shipper may be required to be responsible for the loading, stowage and discharge of bulk bags under the direction of NorthLink Ferries. The Shipper is responsible for the provision of dunnage.

(g) Freight bookings should be made by contacting The Customer Service Centre. Details of the maximum operating parameters of NorthLink Ferries’ equipment, vessels and shore side facilities are available on the NorthLink Ferries website.

(h) NorthLink Ferries is under no obligation to send any notice of its receipt of any Goods, Luggage, vehicle or livestock for the purpose of carriage, and is under no obligation to send any notice of the arrival of any Goods, Luggage, vehicle or livestock subsequent to carriage.

9. Health and Safety

(a) Passengers are required to pay attention to and comply with all safety and security regulations, announcements or notices made ashore or on board any Vessel by or on behalf of NorthLink Ferries. Passengers must take care for their own safety whilst on board any Vessel, taking account of sea and environmental conditions.

(b) All reasonable safety instructions given by or on behalf of NorthLink Ferries must be complied with by all Passengers and Shippers. NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled to question any Passenger, or Shipper and undertake searches of Passengers, Goods, Luggage and vehicles carried or to be carried on their Vessels to ensure the safety and welfare generally of its Vessels, Passengers, crew and cargo.

(c) Passengers are not permitted on the vehicle decks of Vessels while at sea unless signage and crew on board direct otherwise. Vehicle occupants must leave their vehicles as soon as they are parked on board. Passengers shall not be allowed access to any vehicle after loading except in the presence of a ship’s officer or member of the Vessel’s crew.

10. Alcohol consumption and smoking

(a) Passengers who are deemed by NorthLink Ferries in its absolute discretion to be under the influence of drink or drugs or otherwise and are deemed to pose a risk of disturbance or of harm to themselves or to others shall not be permitted to board a Vessel or may be removed from vessel. NorthLink Ferries shall not be required to reimburse the Passenger the cost of the booking nor any other costs incurred by the Passenger resulting from the refusal to board or removal from a vessel.

(b) Certain NorthLink Ferries vessels sell alcohol. In its absolute discretion, NorthLink Ferries may refuse to sell alcohol to any Passenger.

(c) Smoking, including the use of e-cigarettes, is prohibited on all areas of the Vessels other than those external areas designated as permitted smoking areas.

11. Carriage of Dangerous Goods and Substances, Firearms and Fuel

(a) NorthLink Ferries’ Prohibited Items Policy contains a non-exhaustive list of items which are not permitted to be taken on-board any Vessel, and is available on the NorthLink Ferries website

(b) All Regulations applicable to the shipment of dangerous goods and substances on board the Vessels must be strictly adhered to by Passengers and the Shippers of such goods and substances. Dangerous goods or substances as classified in these Conditions or in any of the Dangerous Substances in Harbour Areas Regulations 1987, the Merchant Shipping (Dangerous or Noxious Liquid Substances in Bulk) Regulations 1996 and/or the Merchant Shipping (Dangerous Goods and Marine Pollutants) Regulations 1997, and other substances as specified in the International Maritime Dangerous Goods Code or any other legislation or publication issued of a similar nature relating to the carriage of dangerous goods by sea must not be shipped or otherwise loaded on the Vessels unless prior permission from NorthLink Ferries has been given.

(c) Without prejudice to the classification of substances referred to in the Regulations and Codes above, the following items are classified under these Conditions as being or comprising dangerous goods and substances:- firearms (whether loaded or unloaded); explosives; non-flammable compressed liquefied or dissolved gas; toxic gas; flammable gas; flammable liquid; flammable solids; spontaneously combustible substances; substances which in contact with water are liable to become spontaneously combustible or to give off a flammable gas; oxidising substances; organic peroxides; toxic substances; infectious substances, radioactive substances and corrosive substances

(d) Passengers and Shippers of dangerous goods and substances must complete NorthLink Ferries’ Dangerous Goods Declaration and Packing Certificate. This document must be submitted to the Customer Service Centre by email or by fax a minimum of 24 hours prior to departure. A copy must also be submitted to NorthLink Ferries at check-in.

(e) NorthLink Ferries’ Firearms and Ammunition Policies contain the procedures which must be complied with for the carriage of firearms and ammunition, this is available on the NorthLink Ferries website.

(f) Firearms must be declared at the time of booking with the Customer Service Centre and again at check-in. They must be supported by an appropriate firearms licence which must be made available for inspection.

(g) Passengers may be required to surrender any firearms and ammunition prior to embarkation for carriage on the vessel.

(h) All vehicles carrying petrol or fuel oil in their main fuel tank shall be fitted with means whereby the fuel supply shall be shut off either (i) in the case of gravity feed by closing the valve or (ii) in the case of a pump feed by stopping the engine. No fuel tank shall be filled to such a degree as will allow any spillage during loading or unloading or throughout the voyage when the motion of the Vessel must be taken into account.

(i) Air cylinders or other containers of compressed gas such as are used as diving equipment must remain in the Passenger’s vehicle or within NorthLink Ferries’ specialist dive containers which can be reserved at the time of booking and are subject to availability. The Dive Equipment Policy is available on the NorthLink Ferries’ website. Shippers of such diving equipment must complete NorthLink Ferries’ Dangerous Goods Declaration and Packing Certificate – For Divers. This document must be submitted to the Customer Service Centre by email or by fax a minimum of 24 hours prior to departure. A copy must also be submitted at check-in.

(j) All gas cylinders in boats, caravans and in other vehicles where the gas is used solely in connection with its operation or business shall be declared by to the Vessel’s officer in charge of loading and the following conditions shall apply:-

  • the maximum number of cylinders carried shall be 3, except in the case of small expendable cartridges hermetically sealed and packed in an outer container, when up to 12 may be carried;
  • all cylinders shall be adequately secured against movement of the ship;
  • the supply shall be shut off at the cylinders during the entire voyage;
  • leaking and inadequately secured or connected cylinders should not be offered for shipment; and
  • no pierced expendable cartridge shall be carried in any vehicle and any such cartridge shall be safely disposed of prior to shipment of the vehicle.

(k) Any breach of these Conditions relating to the carriage of dangerous goods and substances, shall entitle NorthLink Ferries at its absolute discretion to refuse shipment and to take such other reasonable action as may be deemed necessary to ensure the safety of its Vessels, Passengers, crew and cargo. The Passenger or Shipper who is in breach shall be liable for any loss, injury or damage arising out of or connected with such breach and all payments made to NorthLink Ferries for the intended shipment and carriage such as are frustrated by such breach shall be forfeited and may credited by NorthLink Ferries towards the amount of such loss, damage and/or injury.

12. Liability to NorthLink Ferries

(a) All Passengers and Shippers shall be liable to NorthLink Ferries for any damage occasioned by them to a Vessel and its fittings, furnishings and equipment or any other property of NorthLink Ferries or property of third parties carried by NorthLink Ferries through his negligence or wilful act or omission or breach of these Conditions. Passengers and Shippers shall indemnify NorthLink Ferries, its employees and agents in respect of all losses and liabilities incurred through such negligence, wilful act or omission or breach.

(b) Passengers are responsible for ensuring they are fit to travel. Passengers who are pregnant or have a pre-diagnosed health condition or an injury are advised to seek medical advice before travelling.

(c) In the event that medical treatment or emergency assistance is provided or ordered by NorthLink Ferries or anyone on its behalf, the Passenger for whom the treatment or assistance was obtained shall indemnify NorthLink Ferries for any costs incurred in respect of such treatment or assistance.

(d) Without prejudice to clause 12(e), NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled at its absolute discretion to recover storage charges at such rates as it considers fit from the Owner of any Goods, Luggage, vehicle or animal left in the custody of NorthLink Ferries in excess of a period commencing four hours before the relevant advertised sailing time and ending two hours after the arrival of the vessel at the port of discharge.

(e) NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled to hold any Goods, Luggage, vehicles and livestock until all the charges and costs in respect of them are paid, and until all other amounts due to NorthLink Ferries in respect of any matter whatsoever from the Owner of said Luggage, Goods, vehicles and livestock are paid.

(f) NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled to sell such Goods, Luggage, vehicles and livestock upon reasonable notice at such time and in such manner as it may decide, to satisfy any such amounts remaining owed.

13. Exclusions and limitations of liability

Notwithstanding the terms of these Conditions, NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled to the maximum protection afforded by law in force in Scotland and applicable to the liability of or any assessment of damages recoverable from carriers such as NorthLink Ferries. Any exemption from or limitation of liability afforded to NorthLink Ferries whether under these Conditions or under the Athens Convention or otherwise under the law of Scotland shall extend to its employees and agents acting within the course and scope of their respective employment/agency.

14. Exclusions of liability

(a) NorthLink Ferries shall not be liable for any loss or damage arising from a defect in or failure of any of the Services where such defect or failure is caused by:-

  • the fault of a Passenger;
  • the fault of a third party (that is, a party other than an employee or agent of NorthLink Ferries acting within the course and scope of his respective employment/agency);
  • unusual and unforeseeable circumstances beyond the control of NorthLink Ferries; or
  • any of the events set out in Section 7 of these Conditions.

(b) NorthLink Ferries shall not be liable under any circumstances for any loss of profits, loss of business and/or any other indirect or consequential loss or damage howsoever caused, even if caused by negligence on the part of NorthLink Ferries, its servants, employees or agents or its contractors or their sub-contractors.

(c) NorthLink Ferries shall have no liability whatsoever for loss of or damage to any Luggage, Commercial Vehicles, Goods, Unaccompanied Vehicles or livestock prior to embarkation or subsequent to discharge except in circumstances where there is proved to have been negligence on the part of NorthLink Ferries.

(d) NorthLink Ferries shall take all reasonable steps to provide an electricity supply to refrigerated trailers during their carriage on Vessels but shall not be liable for any loss or damage of any kind whatsoever caused by the non-provision or inadequacy or interruption or failure of any such supply, or the failure to keep goods at any stipulated temperature, save where such non-provision, inadequacy, interruption or failure is proved to be as a direct result of negligence on the part of NorthLink Ferries or its employees in which case any such claim must be notified to the Customer Services Department by telephone during office hours or by email or fax within two hours of discharge of the refrigerated trailer from the Vessel failing which NorthLink Ferries shall have no liability whatsoever.

15. Limitation of liability – Passengers, their Luggage and their vehicles

(a) Passengers, their Luggage and their vehicles are carried by NorthLink Ferries in accordance with the provisions of the Athens Convention, except insofar as it purports to determine the applicable jurisdiction for the determination of disputes. The Athens Convention shall apply in every situation involving the death of or personal injury to a Passenger or the loss of or damage to Luggage occurring on board a Vessel.

(b) The following provisions of the Athens Convention are specifically brought to customers’ attention:

  • The liability of NorthLink Ferries in respect of death or personal injury and for the loss of or damage to Luggage shall not exceed an amount equal to the limits under the Athens Convention.
  • Any liability of NorthLink Ferries in respect of loss of or damage to Luggage under the Athens Convention shall be subject to a deductible, to be applied at the discretion of NorthLink Ferries.
    o In certain circumstances defined in the Athens Convention, the liability of NorthLink Ferries is excluded.
  • The Athens Convention presumes that Luggage has been delivered undamaged unless written notice is given to NorthLink Ferries (a) in the case of apparent damage, before or at the time of disembarkation or redelivery or (b) in the case of damage which is not apparent or of loss, within 15 days from the date of disembarkation or redelivery, or from the time when such redelivery should have taken place.
  • Any action for damages arising out of the death of or personal injury to a Passenger and/or for the loss of or damage to Luggage shall be time-barred after a period of 2 years, as calculated in accordance with the Athens Convention.
  • NorthLink Ferries shall not be liable for the loss of or damage to valuables as defined in the Athens Convention, unless such valuables have been deposited for safe keeping by agreement in writing by a duly authorised individual, in which case NorthLink Ferries shall be liable up to the limits specified in the Athens Convention or up to such higher limits as specifically agreed in writing between the parties.

(c) The application of the Athens Convention to these Conditions shall not be construed so as to restrict or remove the right of NorthLink Ferries to any limitation of or exemption from liability afforded to it by any applicable statute, convention or similar.

16. Limitation and exclusions of liability – freight

(a) All Goods, Commercial Vehicles and Unaccompanied Vehicles are carried by NorthLink Ferries in accordance with the provisions of the Hague Visby Rules relating to the limitation of liability which shall apply in every situation involving the loss of or damage to Goods carried or to be carried by NorthLink Ferries.

(b) Any finding of or the exclusion of liability of NorthLink Ferries for any loss or damage to Goods, Commercial Vehicles and Unaccompanied Vehicles shall be determined by application of the Hague Visby Rules.

(c) The liability of NorthLink Ferries in respect of damage to Goods, Commercial Vehicles and Unaccompanied Vehicles shall not exceed an amount equal to the limits under the Hague Visby Rules.

(d) Article III Rule 8 of the Hague Visby Rules shall not apply. Should provisions in these Conditions restrict the liability of NorthLink Ferries to an extent greater than provisions of the Hague Visby Rules, the provisions in these Conditions shall prevail.

17. Limitation and exclusions of liability – livestock and other animals

(a) Livestock must not be moved, collected or otherwise removed from the Vessel or any vehicle, trailer or Commercial Vehicle upon which livestock is carried without the consent of the NorthLink Ferries.

(b) The responsibility for the wellbeing and restraint of all livestock rests solely with the Shipper of the livestock prior to the livestock entering and after exiting the lairage property.

(c) NorthLink Ferries shall not be liable for injury, illness, loss or death of any animal whatsoever, howsoever or wheresoever arising or occurring, even if arising or occurring as a result of negligence on the part of NorthLink Ferries, its servants, employees, agents, contractors and/or their sub-contractors.

(d) NorthLink Ferries shall have no liability for the cost of bedding or feeding livestock, incurred as a result of any Vessel not sailing or not arriving at the time advertised, even if the Vessel not sailing and/or arriving at an advertised time is due to negligence on the part of NorthLink Ferries or its servants, employees, agents, contractors and/or their sub-contractors.

(e) NorthLink Ferries shall have no liability of any kind whatsoever for the cost of bedding and/or feeding livestock that are refused carriage on any service, including as a result of the late arrival of that livestock at the load port.

(f) NorthLink Ferries shall not be accountable for the number of livestock stated on any consignment note (such number being taken on the representation of the livestock Owner or Shipper) nor for the correct selection of livestock on landing.

(g) NorthLink Ferries may direct Shippers of Livestock to take such steps as are necessary in order to comply with its obligations under The Welfare of Animals (Transport) (Scotland) Regulations 2006.

(h) NorthLink Ferries may at its absolute discretion require Shippers of livestock to ensure that livestock transported on the Vessels is accompanied by at least one person who has specific training or equivalent practical experience qualifying him to handle and transport vertebrate animals and to administer, if necessary, appropriate care to such animals.
(i) NorthLink Ferries shall be entitled at its absolute discretion to instruct a veterinarian to assess and/or provide treatment to livestock or any other animal carried or to be carried on its Vessels. The owner or Shipper of the livestock or other animals in question shall indemnify NorthLink Ferries in respect of all costs incurred in providing that assessment or treatment, together with any associated costs incurred to the veterinarian or others.

18. Making a claim

(a) Any claim should be made in writing by email or post to the Customer Services Department.

(b) Any claim which is not subject to the time limit provisions of the Athens Convention, the Hague Visby Rules or the Passenger Rights Regulation or any other shorter specified time limit in these Conditions must be notified in writing, as above, to the Customer Services Department within 28 days of disembarkation or of the date when the claimant first had or ought to have had knowledge of the material facts giving rise to the claim, whichever date is the later.

(c) Any court or other applicable proceedings against NorthLink Ferries must be served within two years of disembarkation or of the date when the claimant first had or had to have had knowledge of the material facts giving rise to the claim, whichever date is the later.

(d) Unless the time limits in this Clause 18 are complied with NorthLink Ferries shall be under no liability whatsoever and the right to bring any claim shall be barred by the passage of time.

NOTICE OF ALL OF WHICH IS HEREBY GIVEN
Serco Ltd, operating as NorthLink Ferries
16 Bartley Wood Business Park, Bartley Way, Hook, Hampshire, RG27 9UY

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