What is a port of refuge?

A port that a ship is diverted to when the master considers it unsafe to continue the voyage due to a peril that threatens the common safety, e. g. when there is a dangerous ingress of water into the ship; there is a dangerous shift of cargo;Β 

the ship adopts an angle of loll; there is a serious fire on board; etc. Where the deviation is for the preservation of all the property involved in a common maritime adventure (i. e. for the common safety), it will usually qualify as a general average act and the costs of the diversion to, entry into and stay at the port of refuge will be allowed in general average. A port of refuge can be said, in summary, to be any port where general average expenditure is incurred.


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