FOLLOWING acquisition of new equipment, the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) vehicle section is now able to clear 1,000 cars in an eight hour shift compared to the previous 400.
The Principal Operation Officer and Head Motor Vehicle section, Mr Daniel Sira told journalists who toured the port that the process of offloading vehicles is now faster and more efficient.
"We have done so with a keen desire to provide quick and efficient services to our customers who import vehicles and for the ships that don't have long to stay at the port," he said, adding that the equipment and hard work has increased efficiency.
Mr Sira said that offloading has improved largely because of adequate equipment that enable ships to berth for the shortest period of time since it is expensive to berth for long and attracts more ships to continue using the port. Mr Sira said with the current procedure of inspecting cars when offloading from the ship, employees have become more careful.
He said that when offloading, all vehicles that haven't been tampered with are allowed to leave the port after being labelled with a green sticker and vehicles with faults bear red stickers. "In the past there were a lot of delays during inspection because all vehicles irrespective to whether they were okay or had faults had to fill in a vehicle discharge inspection and transfer tally form, this no longer happens," he said.
Mr Sira said also that cars that were offloaded and later vandalised at the port during handing over from ships by agents were required to fill a vehicle handover form so as to show that the vandalism was done within the port. He stressed that ship owners are obliged to pay owners of vehicles that have been broken into while en route and it is the responsibility of the port authority to compensate all those whose vehicles were vandalised at the port.
For cars bearing red stickers, another inspection is required to be conducted under the supervision of a port clerk and a clearing and forwarding agent and sign a document, stating the missing accessories after the vehicle was offloaded from the ship.
Mr Sira called upon vehicle importers, car dealers and individuals to demand for vehicle handover and vehicle discharge inspection and transfer tally forms from clearing and forwarding agencies that collect these forms from the port authority.