Posts Tagged "Rena"

New Zealand: Forewarning of the Big One

13 Oct 2011

New Zealand: Forewarning of the Big One

The grounding of the Rena in New Zealand

The grounding of the Rena on October 5th and the subsequent inability of the ship-owner and New Zealand maritime authority’s to free the vessel, to stop the fuel from leaking and to avoid the loss of containers foreshadow big future disasters in the field of container shipping.

In 1980 the largest container ships carried up to 2,000 containers, in 1991 up to 4,400, in 2003 the figure increased to 8,800 and in 2007 up to 14,500 containers. Starting from 2013, some container ships from the Danish company Maersk will be able to transport up to 18,000 containers. The “normal” crew size of 19 could further be reduced to 13. The container ships will measure 400 meters in length, 59 meters in width and the containers will be staked up to 73 meters in height. These new container ships will also carry 15,000 to 20,000 tons of bunker fuel however, the exact capacity is confidential. Insurers as well as Search and Rescue services, port stakeholders, maritime experts and some environmental NGOs are all concerned about this endless race to gigantic container ships.

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