It's happened again: Another vast cargo ship temporarily blocked the Suez Canal on Thursday - but the good news is that this latest incident has now forced the canal authorities to take action and invest in widening the canal.
A ship from Panama called the Coral Crystal got stuck after traveling about 33 miles into the canal, Arabic language news outlet Al-Ain reported, blocking one lane and forcing authorities to divert a handful of ships that were stuck behind it. The temporary blockage was resolved swiftly thanks to the canal’s tugboats, according to Metro - but not without serving as a brief reminder of how one glitch (remember the ill-fated EverGiven back in March?) in the global shipping industry can seriously disrupt marine trade.
At 738 feet, the Coral Crystal is only about half as long as the EverGiven, making it far easier for authorities to refloat and send on its way. That’s even with its 43,000 tons of cargo.
Still, canal authorities seem to be fed up with this year’s unfortunate collection of unintentional blockades. So, the good news is that the authorities are now working on a huge project to widen key parts of the 205m wide, 193km long canal in the hope that breakdowns and prangs can be avoided in future.
In case you missed it, the EverGiven successfully navigated its return trip along the canal a couple of weeks ago without being slammed by high winds en route and ending up nose first in the sand. Again.
Today's OGN Sunday Magazine articles