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Maersk ship drops 90 containers in "very serious incident"

Approximately 100 other containers were damaged while no crew members were injured.

Incident occurred while the vessel was on its way from Yantian, China, to Seattle, USA.
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Incident occurred while the vessel was on its way from Yantian, China, to Seattle, USA. 

A Maersk-operated container ship dropped 90 containers in the Western Pacific because of rough weather on March 21, which is being seen as "a very serious incident."

The 4,578 TEU, Liberia-flagged vessel Dyros is chartered and operated by Maersk, an official statement said. "Nine of these containers are labelled dangerous cargo, and contained lithium-ion batteries packed with equipment."

Approximately 100 other containers were damaged while no crew members were injured.

"The incident occurred while the vessel was on its way from Yantian, China, to Seattle, USA. The ship is able to continue its voyage and is heading for safe port. Crew, vessel and operations safety are of highest importance, and we are working closely together with the ship managers and we view this as a very serious incident which will be investigated thoroughly with the aim of minimising the risk of similar incidents in the future."

Maersk is now reporting lost containers
Maersk started disclosing the number of lost containers overboard as part of sustainability reporting.

"In 2021, Maersk lost 962 containers at sea, which came from two incidents in January, where Essen Maersk lost 727 containers overboard, and in February where Eindhoven Maersk lost 235 containers. These were exceptional losses far above the norm."

Danish financial publication Finans had reported some time back that customers who had cargo aboard Essen Maersk had sought compensation for the losses.

The only other exceptional year in the past decade was 2014 where 553 containers were lost, the sustainability report said.

"In all other years, the losses have ranged from 0 to 110 as the highest with an average across the decade of 30 containers lost, mainly due to adverse weather conditions."

The report also mentioned that Maersk is participating in the TopTier project, an industry collaboration to address causes of loss of containers from large vessels.

Jyothi Shankaran

Jyothi Shankaran

Associate Editor, STAT Media Group. He has worked with IndiaSpend, Bloomberg TV, Business Standard and Indian Express Group. Jyothi can be reached at jyothi@statmediagroup.com


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