Longshoreman Duties and Responsibilities

Updated on: November 3, 2017

Position Overview

A longshoreman is an important part of a logistics organization, or while working as part of the crew at a port. The basic work of a person at this position is to make sure that cargo shipments are properly handled – both incoming and outgoing.

There is a lot of physical work involved, which is why it is imperative for longshoremen to be physically strong and dexterous.

Position Requirements

Usually, a high school diploma or a GED equivalent is sufficient to work as a longshoreman. If you have had some experience in a previous role, you may be given higher consideration. Also, if you have had some exposure to logistics work, your candidature will become stronger. Working as a longshoreman means that you will be on your feet constantly. If you do not like working outdoors, or in extreme weather conditions, this work is not for you. However, if working in the great outdoors is something that you have aspired to do for some time, there is nothing like working as a longshoreman.

Typically, a longshoreman is responsible for making sure that all the shipments that are received, are properly put away, and that outgoing ones, are sent in a timely manner, and according to set procedures. Here is a list of duties that are particular to the position of a longshoreman:


Longshoreman Duties and Responsibilities


• Obtain information regarding port numbers where assigned shipments are supposed to reach.

• Look through work orders to determine how many shipments needs to be overseen.

• Dock ships and look for assigned cargo containers by going through shipment lots.

• Pick the right cargo containers by looking through batch and item numbers, and lift and move them to the checking area.

• Inspect, count, and document cargo containers using both manual and automated data processing systems.

• Load and unload cargo to and from ships, docks, beaches, railheads, and motor vehicles.

• Operate different types and sizes of winches, cranes, and forklifts, and ensure that they are properly maintained as per schedule.

• Assist in the creation and implementation of load plans for shipment purposes.

• Operate complicated loading equipment, to move large cargo containers from one place to another.

• Unload cargo containers from delivery vessels, and load them onto awaiting trucks and vans.

• Assist checkers in exploring the contents of containers, to ensure that correct shipments have been received.

• Check to see if shipments may have been damaged, and write damage reports according to company protocols.

• Record all information regarding both incoming and outgoing shipments, in the company’s log system.