40 Shipping Containers Adrift Off US Pacific Coast After Vessel Hit By Rough Seas
The global supply chain is more snarled than ever, forcing container ships to stack truck-size intermodal containers to the brim in a technique called containerization. The more shipping containers loaded up on a vessel, the more prone it becomes to an accident at sea in adverse weather conditions.
That’s precisely what happened last night, off the Pacific Coast, when stormy seas knocked 40 shipping containers off a vessel. The incident occurred when an inbound container ship about 43 miles west of the Strait of Juan de Fuca entrance was listed to its side due to a storm.
#BreakingNews Coast Guard crews are monitoring several adrift shipping containers 43 miles west of the Straits of Juan de Fuca entrance. An inbound vessel lost approx. 40 containers when the ship listed to its side due to rough seas. Check back for updates. pic.twitter.com/GInKf8M0sB
— USCGPacificNorthwest (@USCGPacificNW) October 22, 2021
The Coast Guard dispatched a helicopter from Port Angeles, Washington, to investigate the incident. What they found were 35 containers floating and unable to find the rest.
This weekend, a powerful storm is on the Pacific Coast and is responsible for heavy seas and high winds that put container ships at risk of losing cargo.
The next significant storm system for Sunday into Monday is taking shape about 1900 miles to our west this evening. The fast moving clouds to its south is the location of the jet stream which will interact with the system as it develops and strengthens over the weekend. #wawx pic.twitter.com/klh9AUw9kJ
— NWS Seattle (@NWSSeattle) October 23, 2021
In April, reports surged of containers being lost as sea as vessels were being stacked to full capacity amid strained supply chains. The unintended consequence of packing ships full of cargo is that they become more accident-prone in rough waters. Add this potential risk to an already fragile supply chain that is experiencing record congestion at ports.
Sat, 10/23/2021 – 20:00