Transnet has declared its second force majeure since July. The event triggering the declaration was a fire that occurred on its conveyor belts at the Richard's Bay port (one of three in the last three weeks) which is reported to have lasted 5 hours. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Declaring force majeure has far reaching consequences at various levels which can include the cancellation of contracts. It is therefore important to ensure that all affected parties are aware of their respective rights and obligations relating to force majeure and that the requirements for declaring force majeure are properly understood and complied with.

By Keshia Manolios

Director, Litigation & Dispute Resolution at Andersen in South Africa