load line

load line

noun Nautical.
1.
Also called Plimsoll line. any of various lines marked on the sides of a cargo vessel to indicate the depth to which a vessel may be immersed under certain conditions. Compare freeboard ( def 1a ).
2.
the line made by the surface of the water on the hull of a loaded ship.

Origin:
1880–85

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
load line
 
n
nautical a pattern of lines painted on the hull of a ship, approximately midway between the bow and the stern, indicating the various levels that the waterline should reach if the ship is properly loaded under given circumstances

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