B-136641, AUG 20, 1958

B-136641: Aug 20, 1958

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THE AMOUNT YOU WERE REQUIRED TO REIMBURSE THE GOVERNMENT FOR EXCESS COSTS INCURRED IN THE TRANSPORTATION OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS FROM WETHERSFIELD. WHICH PROVIDES THAT IF THE WEIGHT AND MEASUREMENT ARE IN EXCESS OF THE PRESCRIBED LIMITATIONS (8. THE EMPLOYEE MUST PAY FOR EXCESS WEIGHT OVER THAT PART OF THE DISTANCE WHERE CHARGES ARE BASED ON WEIGHT. OR FOR EXCESS BY MEASUREMENT OVER THE PART OF THE DISTANCE WHERE CHARGES ARE BASED ON MEASUREMENT. 000 POUNDS (NET) FOR YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS MAY HAVE BEEN ESTIMATED AND THAT EXCESSIVE PACKING MATERIALS WERE USED PREPARING SUCH GOODS AND EFFECTS FOR SHIPMENT. YOU ALSO GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT YOU SAY IS TYPICAL OF THE PACKING USED FOR THE ENTIRE SHIPMENT AND WHICH YOU BELIEVE IS EXCESSIVE PACKING.

B-136641, AUG 20, 1958

PRECIS-UNAVAILABLE

MR. IAN W. MILLER:

ON MAY 30, 1958, YOU REQUESTED RECONSIDERATION OF OUR SETTLEMENT OF MAY 19, 1958, WHICH DISALLOWED YOUR CLAIM FOR REFUND OF $371.46, THE AMOUNT YOU WERE REQUIRED TO REIMBURSE THE GOVERNMENT FOR EXCESS COSTS INCURRED IN THE TRANSPORTATION OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS FROM WETHERSFIELD, ENGLAND, TO MONTEBELLO, CALIFORNIA, UNDER PERMANENT CHANGE OF STATION ORDERS AS AN EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE.

YOU DO NOT QUESTION THE LEGAL REQUIREMENT OF EXECUTIVE ORDER 9805, TITLE III, SECTION 17-C, WHICH PROVIDES THAT IF THE WEIGHT AND MEASUREMENT ARE IN EXCESS OF THE PRESCRIBED LIMITATIONS (8,750 POUNDS GROSS, OR 1,000 CUBIC FEET), THE EMPLOYEE MUST PAY FOR EXCESS WEIGHT OVER THAT PART OF THE DISTANCE WHERE CHARGES ARE BASED ON WEIGHT, OR FOR EXCESS BY MEASUREMENT OVER THE PART OF THE DISTANCE WHERE CHARGES ARE BASED ON MEASUREMENT. HOWEVER, YOU SUGGEST THAT THE WEIGHT OF 7,000 POUNDS (NET) FOR YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS MAY HAVE BEEN ESTIMATED AND THAT EXCESSIVE PACKING MATERIALS WERE USED PREPARING SUCH GOODS AND EFFECTS FOR SHIPMENT. YOU ALSO GIVE AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT YOU SAY IS TYPICAL OF THE PACKING USED FOR THE ENTIRE SHIPMENT AND WHICH YOU BELIEVE IS EXCESSIVE PACKING. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT YOU FURNISHED SUBSTANTIALLY THE SAME INFORMATION TO THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE IN PROTEST OF THE EXCESS COSTS YOU WERE REQUIRED TO PAY FOR THE RETURN TRANSPORTATION OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS.

THE DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE HAS FURNISHED US INFORMATION WHICH SHOWS THE GOVERNMENT USED EIGHT CONTAINERS (TWO CONEX CONTAINERS AND SIX BOXES) IN THE RETURN SHIPMENT OF YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS TO THE UNITED STATES. INFORMATION FURNISHED YOU BY HEADQUARTERS, HAMPTON ROADS ARMY TERMINAL, NORFOLK, VIRGINIA, LISTS GROSS WEIGHT, NET WEIGHT, TARE, AND CUBE MEASUREMENT FOR EACH CONTAINER AND BOX. A COPY OF THE INVENTORY LIST OF YOUR GOODS AND EFFECTS, SHOWING THE ITEMS PACKED INTO EACH CONTAINER AND BOX, DISCLOSES A CONSIDERABLE AMOUNT OF FRAGILE AND DIFFICULT TO PACK ITEMS. THE DEPARTMENT HAS ADVISED US THAT IT IS THEIR OPINION THAT THE AMOUNT OF PACKING USED AND THE ASSESSED COSTS DO NOT APPEAR UNREASONABLE, IN VIEW OF THE NATURE OF THE GOODS PACKED.

OUR OFFICE MUST RELY UPON THE WRITTEN RECORD IN THE SETTLEMENT OF CLAIMS, SINCE, GENERALLY, WE HAVE NO KNOWLEDGE OF THE FACTS OR CIRCUMSTANCES CONCERNED OTHER THAN THOSE FURNISHED BY THE CLAIMANTS AND THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICES. WHILE IT MAY BE THAT YOUR HOUSEHOLD GOODS AND PERSONAL EFFECTS WERE PACKED MORE SECURELY THAN YOU PERSONALLY WOULD HAVE PACKED THEM, THE FINDING BY THE DEPARTMENT APPEARS TO BE BASED UPON EXPERIENCE IN SHIPPING THE TYPE OF GOODS LISTED ON THE INVENTORY OF YOUR EFFECTS AND GOODS. MOREOVER, SECTION 1 OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE EXPENSES ACT OF 1946, 60 STAT. 806, SPECIFIES THE MAXIMUM GROSS WEIGHT OF EFFECTS THAT MAY BE SHIPPED AT GOVERNMENT EXPENSE UPON TRANSFER OF STATION. APPROPRIATED FUNDS ARE NOT AVAILABLE FOR PAYMENT OF THE COSTS OF SHIPMENT OF EFFECTS IN EXCESS OF THE STATUTORY GROSS WEIGHT ALLOWANCE.

THEREFORE, AND SINCE THE EVIDENCE INDICATES THAT WEIGHT SHOWN FOR EACH CONTAINER WAS THE ACTUAL WEIGHT RATHER THAN AN ESTIMATED WEIGHT, OUR SETTLEMENT OF MAY 19, 1958, WAS CORRECT AND IS SUSTAINED.