Transit incidents during the journey

If transit goods are transferred into another means of transport during the journey, if additional goods are loaded into the means of transport that carries the goods, or if other changes take place, for example a seal is broken, contact Customs and follow their instructions.

If events during the journey are recorded in a transit declaration initiated in Finland, information about the events is also sent to the holder of the procedure for information by means of the "Events during the journey" declaration.

The carrier must present the goods and the MRN movement reference number at the nearest customs office, if

  • the confirmed (prescribed) route has been deviated from
  • the seals have been broken or they have been tampered with in the course of a transport operation for reasons beyond the operator’s control
  • imminent danger or an accident necessitates unloading of the goods
  • an incident may affect the ability of the holder of the procedure or the carrier to comply with his obligations of the transit procedure
  • any of the elements constituting a single means of transport changes, for example a train carriage is removed or just the tractor unit is changed
  • the goods are reloaded into another means of transport under customs supervision
  • the means of transport is sealed and more goods is to be loaded into it.

The goods and the MRN movement reference number will not have to be presented at the nearest customs office, if the means of transport is not sealed, or if only the tractor unit is changed without opening the sealed cargo space. 

The information on the movement must be submitted to Customs for registering in the transit system at the customs office of destination or the customs office of transit - for example at the border.

Points to consider

If the transport unit is sealed with a seal mentioned in the TAD, permission for additional loading must be requested from Customs’ Command Centre (johtokeskus(at) or from Customs’ customer service at the loading site. If the packages or goods themselves are sealed, then no permission is required for additional loading.

Permission for reloading must be requested in advance from Customs’ Command Centre (johtokeskus(at) or from Customs’ customer service at the loading site. The reloading must take place in a location determined by Customs and according to Customs’ conditions.

When goods under the T transit procedure are reloaded into another transport unit, the quality, quantity and package type must remain the same as they were in the original transit. Packages cannot be opened or changed. Taking goods out of their packaging e.g. to place them into smaller lots, may make the transit goods unidentifiable, and this can lead to the transit not being discharged without post-clearance, which then is directed to the transit principal.

Customs can give permission for reloading without supervision. Customs validate the data at the customs office in the area where the reloading took place.

When goods are reloaded from one means of transport into another, no permission from Customs is required if:

  • the goods have been loaded on a trailer and only the truck is changed
  • the goods are reloaded from a means of transport that,
    • has not been sealed or only the goods (packages) have been sealed 
    • if the goods are loaded into a container or/and the trailer serving as the container chassis is replaced during transport.

The holder of the transit procedure must provide notification of the reloading no later than upon arrival at the office of transit or office of destination.

A customs seal can only be removed by Customs or a person authorised by Customs. If the seal breaks during transport, the carrier must immediately request that the means of transport be resealed by the customs authorities in the State where the means of transport is located.

If the goods must be reloaded into another vehicle, then the reloading must happen under the supervision of the customs authority. If there is immediate danger to the cargo (e.g. fire or shifting of the load), then the load can be unloaded on the carrier’s own initiative. The customs authority must immediately be notified of an unloading of the vehicle. The customs authority then affixes new seals and gives a certificate regarding the event. The police can also validate the event in the TAD if an accident occurs or a document containing equivalent information, such as a consignment note.

The transit principal or the driver of the vehicle must always notify Customs when they notice that a seal mentioned in the transit declaration has been broken.

If you notice that a seal has been broken

  • at the warehouse of the authorised consignee - contact the Customs Electronic Service Centre before unloading (tel. 0295 5207)
  • during the journey – contact the nearest customs office or the Customs Command Centre as soon as possible (tel. 0295 527 041)

Customs gives instructions on how the customer should proceed.

An offence report procedure always follows the unlawful breakage of a seal. (Article 192 paragraph 2 of the Union Customs Code, The Customs Act, section 96 (penalty fee) and section 99 (customs violation), the Penalty Code of Finland, chapter 16 section 10.)