Safmarine Meru towed into port after collision, fire extinguished

Safmarine Meru towed into port after collision, fire extinguished

Maersk Line’s containership Safmarine Meru (4,300 dwt, built 2006) has been towed safely in the Port of Ningbo, after colliding with another container vessel and suffering a fire onboard.

The vessel was towed 78 nautical miles to Ningbo from the site of the collision on May 7  with Northern Jasper (8,814 teu, built 2009)which is operated by Germany’s Norddeutsche Reederei H. Schuldt.

On Thursday, a firefighting team boarded the vessel to extinguish the spots of fire that were still smouldering. External firefighting was concluded earlier this week.

The cause of the collision has not yet been determined, but Maersk said investigations are ongoing.

“We are pleased for the Safmarine Meru to be safely berthed and that all crew remain safe, sound and accounted for. I would like to thank the local Chinese authorities for their cooperation and assistance rendered in the response to this incident. Our current priorities are to safely discharge the cargo and conduct inspections to further survey the damages to the vessel,” Palle Laursen, Maersk Line’s head of ship management, said in a release.

Some 400 containers were onboard at the time of the collision, including 11 containers carrying hazardous cargo.

The vessel’s 22 crew are safe. Maersk said on Tuesday arrangements are being made to release the seafarers for shore leave. They have also been offered support from crisis counsellors.

 

Holly Birkett

Holly is Splash's Online Editor and correspondent for the UK and Mediterranean. She has been a maritime journalist since 2010, and has written for and edited several trade publications. She is currently studying for membership of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers. In 2013, Holly won the Seahorse Club's Social Media Journalist of the Year award. She is currently based in London.

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