Suez Canal blocked by massive cargo ship
DUBAI: A massive cargo ship has turned sideways in Egypt's Suez Canal , blocking traffic in a crucial East-West waterway for global shipping, ...
BookmarkDUBAI: A massive cargo ship has turned sideways in Egypt's Suez Canal, blocking traffic in a crucial East-West waterway for global shipping, according to satellite data accessed on Wednesday (Mar 24).Traffic on the narrow waterway dividing continental Africa from the Sinai Peninsula stopped on Tuesday after the MV Ever Given got stuck. The MV Ever Given is a 400m-long and 59m-wide Panama-flagged container ship, with its owner listed in Japan.
AdvertisementAdvertisementIt was not immediately clear what caused the Ever Given to turn sideways in the canal. GAC, a global shipping and logistics company, described the Ever Given as suffering"a blackout while transiting in a northerly direction", without elaborating.
The Ever Given's bow was touching the canal's eastern wall, while its stern looked lodged against its western wall, according to satellite data from MarineTraffic.com. Several tug boats surrounded the ship, likely attempting to push it the right way, the data showed. headtopics.com
Screengrab from MarineTraffic.com of the Ever Given cargo ship stuck in the Suez Canal.An image posted to Instagram by a user on another waiting cargo ship appeared to show the Ever Given wedged across the canal.AdvertisementAdvertisementThe ship in the image matched other photographs of the vessel and the surrounding area shown in the image appeared to match the area where the ship became stuck, according to an analysis by the Associated Press.
Over 150 years old, the Suez Canal is one of the world's most important trade routes, providing passage for 10 per cent of all international maritime trade.Nearly 19,000 ships passed through it last year with a total tonnage of 1.17 billion, according to the Suez Canal Authority (SCA).
Map of the Suez Canal locating a huge container ship causing a traffic jam of vessels in both directions since Mar 23, 2021. (Image: AFP)AdvertisementCanal authorities could not be immediately reached early on Wednesday. The ship appeared to be stuck about 6km north of the southerly mouth of the canal near the city of Suez.
Cargo ships and oil tankers appeared to be lining up at the southern end of the Suez Canal, waiting to be able to pass through the waterway to the Mediterranean Sea, according to MarineTraffic data.Screengrab from MarineTraffic.com showing cargo ships and oil tankers appearing to line up at the southern end of the Suez Canal. headtopics.com
A United Nations database listed the Ever Given as being owned by Shoei Kisen KK, a ship-leasing firm based in Imabari, Japan. The firm could not be immediately reached for comment on Wednesday. The ship had listed its destination as Rotterdam in the Netherlands prior to getting stuck in the canal.
Opened in 1869, the Suez Canal provides a crucial link for oil, natural gas and cargo being shipping from East to West. Around 10 per cent of the world's trade flows through the waterway and it remains one of Egypt's top foreign currency earners.
In 2015, the government of President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi completed a major expansion of the canal, allowing it to accommodate the world’s largest vessels.Egyptian authorities are yet to comment on the tanker incident. Read more: CNA »