Waterside Worker


Waterside workers stack, check and secure contents of shipping containers prepared for storage or dispatch.

Duties & Tasks

Waterside workers may perform the following tasks:

  • pack and unpack containers, open and close hatches and secure cargo to prevent it shifting during voyages
  • clean holds and containers and prepare stevedoring (ship-loading) gear
  • operate a wide range of light and heavy machinery, including forklifts, skid-steer loaders, front-end loaders and a variety of cranes
  • perform a wide range of clerical duties such as recording and checking cargo on arrival, storage or dispatch
  • direct equipment operations using various types of communication systems
  • moor and unmoor ships on arrival and departure
  • stack cargo on pallets, trays, flats and slings to facilitate transfer to and from ships
  • operate and perform minor maintenance checks on forklifts, trucks, front-end loaders and fixed or mobile cranes
  • act as team leader for a wharf or on-ship work team.

Working Conditions

Waterside workers usually work outdoors in ports, container terminals and the holds of ships. They work in most weather conditions, except very strong winds, and may have to work with frozen or dangerous goods, in freezers or in dusty conditions. They usually work shifts involving nights, weekends and public holidays.

Personal Requirements

  • enjoy practical and manual activities
  • able to work in a team
  • able to cope with the physical demands of the job
  • capable of lifting and carrying heavy items
  • good communication and organisational skills
  • able to follow instructions.

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