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Maersk Eindhoven waits for Yokohama clearance

The 13,092 teu Maersk Eindhoven, shipping’s most recent reported box spill case, is currently circling in Japanese waters, awaiting clearance by Japanese authorities for transit into APM Terminals Yokohama terminal, planned for this Thursday.

The 2010-built ship experienced a loss of engine propulsion for three to four minutes while sailing 45 nautical miles off northern Japan in heavy seas last Wednesday. The loss of maneuverability resulted in severe rolling with 260 containers overboard and 65 containers damaged on deck.

Propulsion power was quickly restored on the vessel and the initial analysis from Maersk indicates engine oil pressure triggered a safety feature, causing the engines to shut down.

Maersk stated in an update that all replacement materials and welding activities can be performed in port after which the vessel will resume normal TP6 service routing and head for Los Angeles.

Another ship now heading belatedly to Los Angeles is the Maersk Essen, a sister ship to the Maersk Eindhoven, which lost 750 boxes overboard last month.

The Maersk Essen rerouted to the Mexican port of Lazaro Cardenas. After repairs and cargo inspection, the ship weighed anchor yesterday and is expected to anchor in congested Los Angeles waters on Friday, before resuming its regular loop on March 4.

There have now been six reported cases of boxes lost at sea in the Pacific in the space of just 79 days with around 3,000 containers plunging to the floor of the world’s largest ocean.

The most high profile and largest box spill case is still getting fixed. 85 days since it lost more than 1,800 containers in a storm in the north Pacific the ONE Apus has yet to resume service. The Ocean Network Express (ONE) ship is still moored at the port of Kobe where a delicate cargo unloading process and repairs are taking many weeks. The latest customer advisory from ONE suggests the magenta-coloured ship ought to be able to leave Kobe in the middle of March.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.

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