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12-2015 - Update on Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs: Emergency measures for targeted break bulk and FCL containerised vehicles (including boats), machinery, and automotive parts

​13 March 2015

Who does this notice affect?

This notice is of interest to clients in the import and shipping industry, including importers and customs brokers associated with the importation of targeted break bulk and containerised vehicles (including boats), machinery, and automotive parts shipped from the United States.


Industry notices 125-2014, 02-2015​, 03-2015, 04-2015 and 06-2015 advised of the emergency measures that would apply to specific cargo imported from the United States ports following significant interceptions of Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs (Halyomorpha halys). 

  • 125-2014 applied the measures to break bulk vehicles (including boats), machinery, automotive parts arriving in Australia from the United States Port of Savannah.  This was later extended to Baltimore.
  • 02-2015 extended the measures to all break bulk vehicles (including boats), machinery, automotive parts, and containerised machinery, automotive parts, and tyres being shipped from the east coast ports of the United States and arriving in Australia on or after 23 February 2015.  The notice also included interim arrangements for vessels in transit.
  • 03-2015 further expanded the measures to all break bulk vehicles (including boats), machinery, automotive parts, and containerised vehicles, machinery, automotive parts, and tyres being shipped from all ports of the United States and arriving in Australia on or after 9 March 2015.  The notice also extended the pre-shipment treatment timeframes outlined in 02-2015. 
  • 04-2015 further expanded these pre-shipment treatment timeframes.
  • 06-2015 applied the measures to targeted break bulk and new, unused FCL containerised goods within the revised tariffs outlined below.  Tyres, used containerised goods and LCL consignments would no longer be targeted as the risk can be addressed via other existing import clearance methods.

These notices are available on the department's website.

What has changed now?

The emergency measures will continue to apply to targeted cargo from all ports in the United States arriving in Australia up to and including 30 April 2015.

Thermal fogging (e.g. Py Fog) of first port vessels carrying target break bulk from the United States will now occur on arrival and be followed by pre-discharge inspection of cargo and decks.  There is no need for an initial onboard assessment/inspection of the cargo and decks prior to thermal fogging unless advised otherwise by the department. For vessels carrying only very limited break bulk cargo from the United States, the department will determine case by case whether thermal fogging is required prior to pre-discharge inspection.  Please note, the thermal fog application is used as an inspection aid and is not considered to be a treatment for brown marmorated stink bugs. 

It is recommended that all documentation (pre-shipment treatment certificates, commercial documentation, cargo reports/manifests) be submitted to the department at least 48 hours prior to vessel arrival.  This will assist with early clearance of cargo and minimise potential disruption and costs on the wharf.

To further assist shipping lines and brokers, all documentation can now be sent to National Quarantine Processing or lodged via the Cargo Online Lodgement System (COLS).   

Why do the measures keep changing?

The Department of Agriculture is committed to managing the threat posed by the stink bugs and to ensuring our response continues to be effective, practical and commensurate with the level of risk.  The measures have been reviewed as more information became available and adjusted accordingly.  For example, the extension of treatment timeframes and an outline of the high risk cargo to be treated were in response to logistical and infrastructure issues in the United States that may have precluded timely treatment prior to vessel departure.

What consignments will continue to be targeted?

The table below details the revised tariff headings for targeted consignments arriving in Australia on or before 30 April 2015.

Chapters containing targeted cargo

Tariff headings
to which the
measures apply

Description of heading (or chapter when all headings apply)



Cranes, truck cranes, lifting frames and carriers



Fork-lift trucks and similar



Lifts, escalators, other lifting or handling machinery



Bulldozers, graders, road rollers, tampers etc.



Other moving, grading, levelling, excavating equipment



Parts for bulldozers, off-road, moving machinery etc. 8425-8430



Ploughs and agricultural soil prep machinery



Harvesting, threshing or agricultural machinery, not food processing


all headings




Tractors, not work trucks



Buses, minibuses, coaches, >= 10  passengers



Motor cars and other motor vehicles, < 10 passengers



Motor vehicles for the transport of goods



Special purpose motor vehicles, non passenger



Chassis fitted with engines, for motor vehicles, all types



Bodies for motor vehicles, all types



Parts and accessories for motor vehicles



Works trucks, self-propelled, not fitted with crane



Tanks and other armoured fighting vehicles, motorised



Trailers and semi-trailers, other vehicles, no engine


all headings


What are the current treatment requirements pre-shipment?

Current measures require the treatment of all break bulk vehicles (including boats), machinery, and automotive parts within 96 hours prior to loading, and containerised shipments of new and unused vehicles (including boats), machinery, and automotive parts within 90 days prior to shipment providing containers are immediately sealed and arrive in Australia with “seals intact”. 

Acceptable pre-shipment treatments include:

  • heat (60°C/140°F) for 30 minutes in the coldest location of the cargo
  • methyl bromide (32g/m3@21-25°C for 24 hours, 40g/m3@16-20°C for 24 hours or 48g/m3@11-15°C for 24 hours)
  • sulfuryl fluoride (32g/m3@21-25°C for 24 hours, 40g/m3@16-20°C for 24 hours)
  • other pre-shipment treatments or management arrangements approved by the department.


The department anticipates that the measures will be in place until the end of April 2015.

Further Information

If you have any other concerns or questions regarding these measures please contact the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Hotline on 1800 195 543.​

In addition, the questions and answers are being continually revised and should be consulted for the latest updates. 

While the department is taking every precaution to manage the risk posed by this and other pests, it relies on the cooperation of industry and the public to assist us by reporting any insect or other pest that may be of biosecurity concern.

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