California Harbors and Navigation Code
A marine carrier is liable in like manner as an inland carrier, except for loss or injury caused by the perils of the sea or fire.
The liability of a common carrier by sea is further regulated by acts of Congress.
Perils of the sea are: (a) Storms and waves.
(b) Rocks, shoals, and rapids.
(c) Other obstacles, though of human origin.
(d) Changes of climate.
(e) The confinement necessary at sea.
(f) Animals peculiar to the sea.
(g) All other dangers peculiar to the sea.
A marine carrier shall not stow freight upon deck during the voyage, except where it is usual so to do, nor make any improper deviation from or delay in the voyage, nor do any other unnecessary act which would avoid an insurance in the usual form upon the freight.
The owner of a vessel is bound to pay to the owner of her cargo the market value, at the time of arrival of the ship at the port of her destination, of that portion of her cargo which has been sold to enable the master to pay for the necessary repairs and supplies of the vessel.
A carrier by water may, when in case of extreme peril it is necessary for the safety of the vessel or cargo, throw overboard, or otherwise sacrifice, any or all of the cargo or appurtenances of the vessel. Throwing property overboard for such purpose is called jettison, and the loss incurred is called a general average loss.
So far as possible, a jettison shall begin with the most bulky and least valuable articles.
A jettison can be made only by authority of the master of a vessel, except in case of his disability, or of an overruling necessity, when it may be made by any other person.
The loss incurred by a jettison, when lawfully made, shall be borne in due proportion by all that part of the vessel, appurtenances, freightage, and cargo for the benefit of which the sacrifice is made, as well as by the owner of the thing sacrificed.
The proportions in which a general average loss is to be borne shall be ascertained by an adjustment, in which the owner of each separate interest shall be charged with that proportion of the value of the thing lost which the value of his part of the property affected bears to the value of the whole. But an adjustment made at the end of the voyage, if valid there, is valid everywhere.
In estimating values for the purpose of a general average, the vessel and appurtenances shall be valued as at the end of the voyage, the freightage at one-half the amount due on delivery, and the cargo as at the time and place of its discharge; adding, in each case, the amount made good by contribution.
The owner of things stowed on deck, in case of their jettison, is entitled to the benefit of a general average contribution only if it is usual to stow such things on deck upon such a voyage.
The law concerning jettison and general average is equally applicable to every other voluntary sacrifice of property on a vessel, or to an expense necessarily incurred, for the preservation of the vessel and cargo from extraordinary perils.