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Video Captures Epic Collision Between Laden Containerships in the Suez

01 Oct 2014

Video Captures Epic Collision Between Laden Container ships in the Suez

Something went terribly wrong today aboard Hapag-Lloyd’s containership Colombo Expresswhen it lost control and slammed into the Maersk Tanjong today. Both vessels were heading south through the Suez Canal.

 
 

From the following AIS replay of the incident, it appears the Colombo Express was attempting to overtake the Maersk Tanjong and when a left rudder was applied to come back to a parallel course, the rudder went hard left.

As rudders on ships like this are powered by large, finely tuned hydraulic systems, it ispossible that the this system failed and was the cause of the incident. In fact, while in the Navy, my ship had this very same issue occur, however we were not near any other ships and were able to take manual control of the steering gears and return to port without issue.

  
 
 

Hapag-Lloyd notes in a statement there were no injuries or pollution as a result of the incident.  Maersk Line spokesperson Michael Storgaard notes in phone call that three containers were lost over the side from the Maersk Tanjong, one has been recovered.  No further details on the damage were available however.

The collision was expected to delay Suez traffic in both directions.

The following images are via www.portsaid-alyoum.com:

The collision occurred at 0715 local time at kilometer 15 and the Colombo Express suffered a 20-meter dent to its port bow, according to a statement by Inchcape Shipping Services.

The incident occurred when the Maersk Tanjong was clearing the Suez Canal Container terminal to join the second convoy, whilst the Colombo Express was already proceeding through the convoy at the same point.

The incident has severely interrupted the second southbound convoy and the northbound convoy is therefore expected to delay.

The Suez Canal Authority is currently trying to pick up the dropped containers from the eastern channel and both vessels will be moored at the canal lakes until the required investigations, paper work and maintenance have been completed.

 
 
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