B-131902, AUG. 1, 1957

B-131902: Aug 1, 1957

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USN: FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 30. YOUR EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED INCIDENT TO ORDERS DATED APRIL 22. IN THE SETTLEMENT MENTIONED ABOVE IT WAS STATED THAT YOUR EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED IN TWO LOTS. THAT THE FIRST LOT WAS A RAIL SHIPMENT WEIGHING 1. WAS SHIPPED BY MILITARY SEA TRANSPORT SERVICE FROM PORT-AU-PRINCE. THAT UPON ARRIVAL AT THE LATTER PLACE ADDITIONAL PACKING APPARENTLY WAS NECESSARY INASMUCH AS THE SHIPMENT FROM OAKLAND TO EL CENTRO. IT WAS STATED THAT THE EXCESS COST FOR THAT PORTION OF THE SHIPMENT WAS COMPUTED ON THE METHOD PRESCRIBED WHEN ESPECIALLY DESIGNED CONTAINERS ARE USED. IN YOUR PRESENT LETTER YOU STATE THAT WHEN YOUR EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED FROM WASHINGTON.

B-131902, AUG. 1, 1957

TO P. R. COPPOCK, YNC, USN:

FURTHER REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 30, 1957, REQUESTING REVIEW OF THE SETTLEMENT OF APRIL 24, 1957, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REFUND OF THE AMOUNT COLLECTED FROM YOU AS THE EXCESS COST OF SHIPPING YOUR HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS FROM PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI, TO ELCENTRO, CALIFORNIA.

YOUR EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED INCIDENT TO ORDERS DATED APRIL 22, 1954, TRANSFERRING YOU FROM PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI, TO EL CENTRO, CALIFORNIA, FOR DUTY. SINCE THE WEIGHT OF THE EFFECTS SHIPPED EXCEEDED YOUR AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE, THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY COMPUTED THE EXCESS COST AS $111.71 AND COLLECTED THAT AMOUNT FROM YOU BY CHECK AGE. IN THE SETTLEMENT MENTIONED ABOVE IT WAS STATED THAT YOUR EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED IN TWO LOTS; THAT THE FIRST LOT WAS A RAIL SHIPMENT WEIGHING 1,475 POUNDS; THAT THE SECOND LOT, WEIGHING 8,303 POUNDS, WAS SHIPPED BY MILITARY SEA TRANSPORT SERVICE FROM PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI, TO CRISTOBOL, CANAL ZONE, AND THENCE TO OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA, AND THAT UPON ARRIVAL AT THE LATTER PLACE ADDITIONAL PACKING APPARENTLY WAS NECESSARY INASMUCH AS THE SHIPMENT FROM OAKLAND TO EL CENTRO, CALIFORNIA, WEIGHED 8,725 POUNDS. ALSO, IT WAS STATED THAT THE EXCESS COST FOR THAT PORTION OF THE SHIPMENT WAS COMPUTED ON THE METHOD PRESCRIBED WHEN ESPECIALLY DESIGNED CONTAINERS ARE USED.

IN YOUR PRESENT LETTER YOU STATE THAT WHEN YOUR EFFECTS WERE SHIPPED FROM WASHINGTON, D.C. TO HAITI, THE SHIPMENT WAS IN THREE LARGE LIFT VANS; THAT TWO OF THESE AND A LOCALLY CONSTRUCTED REPLACEMENT VAN FOR THE THIRD WERE USED FOR THE SHIPMENT FROM HAITI; THAT YOUR EFFECTS WERE RECEIVED AT EL CENTRO IN THOSE VANS, AND THAT YOU ARE CERTAIN NO REPACKING WAS DONE BETWEEN PORT-AU-PRINCE AND EL CENTRO. YOU EXPRESS THE OPINION THAT THE EXCESS WEIGHT RESULTED FROM EXCESSIVE PACKING AND QUESTION THE BASIS FOR STATEMENTS AS TO REPACKING AND THE USE OF ESPECIALLY DESIGNED CONTAINERS. ALSO, YOU CITE OUR DECISION B-124899, DATED NOVEMBER 14, 1955, AND QUESTION WHETHER CONSIDERATION WAS GIVEN TO IT AND THE VARIOUS EXTENUATING CIRCUMSTANCES MENTIONED IN YOUR LETTER DATED AUGUST 2, 1956, INCLUDING YOUR STATEMENT THAT THE SHIPMENT WAS SUBSTANTIALLY THE SAME AS THE EARLIER SHIPMENT FROM WASHINGTON, D.C., TO HAITI, IN WHICH NO EXCESS WEIGHT WAS INVOLVED.

THE BILL OF LADING ISSUED TO COVER THE SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS FROM PORT-AU-PRINCE TO CRISTOBOL, CANAL ZONE, VIA COCO SOLO, CANAL ZONE, SHOWS THAT THE SHIPMENT CONSISTED OF TWO CRATES AND TWO BOXES, WEIGHING 8,303 POUNDS AND MEASURING 869 CUBIC FEET, 3 INCHES. THERE IS NOTHING ON THE BILL OF LADING TO INDICATE WHETHER ESPECIALLY DESIGNED CONTAINERS, HOUSEHOLD GOODS SHIPPING BOXES, OR LIFT VANS WERE USED IN MAKING THE SHIPMENT, NOR ARE TARE WEIGHTS SHOWN. THE AMOUNT PAID BY THE GOVERNMENT FOR SHIPMENT FROM PORT-AU-PRINCE TO COCO SOLO WAS BASED ON THE CUBIC MEASUREMENT. AT COCO SOLO THE SHIPMENT WAS DIVERTED TO OAKLAND. SHIPMENT BETWEEN THOSE POINTS WAS ABOARD A GOVERNMENT VESSEL. NO CHARGE WAS INCURRED AND NO RECORD OF THE WEIGHT IS AVAILABLE FOR THAT PORTION OF THE JOURNEY. THE BILL OF LADING FOR SHIPMENT FROM OAKLAND TO EL CENTRO, HOWEVER, SHOWS THAT THE SHIPMENT CONSISTED OF THREE LARGE BOXES (VANS) AND ONE SMALLER BOX. GROSS AND TARE WEIGHTS ARE SHOWN. ALSO, IT IS SHOWN THAT THE SHIPMENT MEASURED 942 CUBIC FEET AND WEIGHED 8,725 POUNDS. THE AMOUNT PAID BY THE GOVERNMENT WAS BASED ON THE TOTAL WEIGHT.

PARAGRAPH 8001-1, JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS, PROVIDES THAT WHEN HOUSEHOLD GOODS ARE SHIPPED BY WATER OR RAIL, THE AUTHORIZED WEIGHT ALLOWANCE IS INCREASED BY 40 PERCENT TO COVER THE WEIGHT OF THE MATERIALS USED IN PACKING AND CRATING. THAT METHOD WAS USED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY IN COMPUTING THE EXCESS COST OF THE SHIPMENT FROM PORT-AU-PRINCE TO COCO SOLO. PARAGRAPH 8001-2 OF THE SAME REGULATIONS PROVIDES THAT WHEN HOUSEHOLD GOODS ARE PACKED IN ESPECIALLY DESIGNED CONTAINERS, HOUSEHOLD GOODS SHIPPING BOXES OR LIFT VANS, THE GROSS AND TARE WEIGHTS WILL BE SHOWN ON THE BILL OF LADING, AND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE GROSS WEIGHT (THE WEIGHT OF THE CONTAINER WHEN PACKED) AND THE TARE WEIGHT (THE WEIGHT OF THE CONTAINER WHEN EMPTY) LESS 15 PERCENT TO ALLOW FOR THE WEIGHT OF PACKING MATERIALS USED WITHIN THE CONTAINER, WILL BE CONSIDERED THE NET WEIGHT OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS SHIPPED. THAT METHOD WAS USED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY IN COMPUTING THE EXCESS COST OF THE SHIPMENT FROM OAKLAND TO EL CENTRO. IN STATING THE SETTLEMENT IT WAS ASSUMED THE SHIPMENT WAS REPACKED IN THE ESPECIALLY DESIGNED CONTAINERS AT OAKLAND.

JOINT TRAVEL REGULATIONS PROMULGATED PURSUANT TO PARAGRAPH 303 (C) OF THE CAREER COMPENSATION ACT OF 1949, 63 STAT. 813, 814, PROVIDE THAT, WITH ORDINARY PACKING AND CRATING METHODS, HOUSEHOLD EFFECTS OF SERVICE PERSONNEL NOT IN EXCESS OF THE WEIGHT LIMITS PRESCRIBED MAY BE SHIPPED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE. WEIGHT ALLOWANCES, DESIGNATED AS ACTUAL NET WEIGHTS AUTHORIZED FOR SHIPMENT, ARE SET FORTH FOR VARIOUS RANKS AND GRADES, AND PROVISION IS MADE FOR AN INCREASE TO ALLOW FOR PACKING AND CRATING. THE REGULATIONS CONTEMPLATE THE SHIPMENT AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS, AS PACKED FOR SHIPMENT, NOT TO EXCEED AN OVER-ALL WEIGHT ALLOWANCE OF WHICH THE NET WEIGHT OF THE HOUSEHOLD GOODS IS BUT ONE COMPONENT PART. THE INCREASE FOR PACKING GENERALLY IS ADEQUATE, BUT, AT LEAST TO SOME EXTENT, THE INCREASE IN WEIGHT CAUSED BY PACKING AND CRATING DEPENDS UPON THE CHARACTER OF THE EFFECTS SHIPPED. WEIGHTS IN EXCESS OF THE MAXIMUM OVER-ALL WEIGHT FIXED BY THE REGULATIONS ARE CHARGEABLE TO THE SHIPPER. NEITHER THE DECISION MENTIONED BY YOU NOR THE OTHER CIRCUMSTANCES SUCH AS ALLEGED HEAVY PACKING AND THE WEIGHT OF SUBSTANTIALLY THE SAME HOUSEHOLD GOODS UPON EARLIER SHIPMENT MAY BE CONSIDERED AS AFFORDING A PROPER BASIS FOR REMISSION OF THE EXCESS COST.

HOWEVER, THE RECORD NOW INDICATES THAT YOUR EFFECTS WERE PACKED IN HOUSEHOLD GOODS SHIPPING BOXES AT PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI, AND THAT THROUGH INADVERTENCE RESULTING FROM THE FACT THAT THERE ARE NO NAVAL FACILITIES THERE, APPROPRIATE INFORMATION WAS OMITTED FROM THE BILL OF LADING AND IS NOT NOW AVAILABLE. IT FURTHER APPEARS THAT A RECOMPUTATION OF THE EXCESS COST USING THE GROSS AND TARE WEIGHTS ESTABLISHED AT OAKLAND TOGETHER WITH THE AMOUNTS ACTUALLY PAID BY THE GOVERNMENT RESULTS IN A LESSER AMOUNT THAN COLLECTED FROM YOU AND ENTITLES YOU TO A REFUND.

ACCORDINGLY, A SETTLEMENT FOR THE AMOUNT DUE ON THE BASIS INDICATED ABOVE WILL ISSUE IN DUE COURSE. THE ENCLOSURES WHICH ACCOMPANIED YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 2, 1956, HAVE BECOME A PART OF THE RECORD ON WHICH ACTION IN YOUR CASE IS BASED AND MAY NOT BE RETURNED TO YOU.