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Shipping containers plunge overboard as supply competition increases risk

(Bloomberg)-Millions of dollars of cargo as containers piled up on huge ships carrying everything from car tires to smartphones tip over at amazing speeds and the pressure to speed up delivery increases the risk of safety errors Is sinking to the bottom of the sea. The shipping industry is seeing the largest surge in containers lost in seven years. Last year, more than 3,000 boxes fell into the sea, and by 2021, more than 1,000 have fallen overboard. The accident disrupts the supply chains of hundreds of US retailers and manufacturers such as Amazon and Tesla. Rapid increase in accidents. The weather is becoming unpredictable, ships are getting bigger, and containers can be stacked higher than ever. But what has made the situation significantly worse is the surge in e-commerce after the explosion of consumer demand during the pandemic, increasing the urgency of shipping companies to deliver their products as soon as possible. It’s more full capacity than it used to be, “said Clive Reed, founder of Reed Marine Maritime Casualty Management Consultancy. “The ship arrives on time, and as a result, there is commercial pressure to make more voyages.” In November, strong winds and large waves struck the 364-meter One Apus, with more than 1,800 containers. After being lost, the footage showed thousands of containers. Steel boxes scattered like Lego shards on board, some torn into metal shards. The incident was the worst since 2013, splitting MOL Comfort into two and sunk an entire 4,293 container of cargo into the Indian Ocean. In January, Maersk Essen lost about 750 boxes during his voyage from Xiamen, China to Los Angeles. A month later, 260 containers fell from Maersk Indhofen, which had a power outage in the rough seas, according to shipping experts. The need for speed creates instability that can quickly lead to disasters. The dangers range from accidentally stacking and locking boxes to captains who do not deviate from the storm to save fuel and time when faced with pressure from charterers. .. One wrong move can endanger cargo and crew. The chances of an accident increase as the exhausted seafarers face an exacerbating situation during a pandemic. Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty estimates that human error contributes to at least three-quarters of accidents and deaths in the shipping industry. Most of the recent accidents have occurred in the Pacific Ocean, where traffic is heavy and bad weather strikes. Last year, the sea route connecting the Asian economy to North American consumers was the most profitable for shipping companies. China’s exports wept as the pandemic demanded everything people needed to work, learn, and entertain from home. The journey is always rough, but it is more dangerous due to changing weather patterns. Todd Crawford, chief meteorologist at The Weather Company, said the increase in traffic from China to the United States this winter coincided with the strongest winds in the North Pacific since 1948, with the potential for rough seas and big waves. It states that it has increased. Shipped annually, losses of over 1,000 can look like a drop in the ocean. “This is a negligible loss,” said Jacob Damgard, Associate Director of Loss Prevention at Britannia P & I, at a conference in Singapore on April 23. Clyde & Co, a maritime law office in London. According to its partner Jai Sharma, One Apus is estimated to cost $ 50,000 per box and lost $ 90 million in cargo alone. This is the best in recent history. This issue is also noteworthy as the landing of a 400-meter vessel on the Suez Canal last month spotlighted vulnerabilities in the shipping industry, with an estimated $ 54.5 million in losses so far this year, according to Bloomberg data. I’m collecting. Megaship has blocked traffic through important waterways for nearly a week, and the impact on world trade is still felt. So far, none of the recent container accidents are directly due to the revocation of safety. The International Maritime Organization said it was waiting for the findings of the latest case and warned that it would draw conclusions before that, but many experts said the situation was more due to pressure on the supply chain since the pandemic. It states that it is in danger. As the ship approaches stormy weather, the captain can escape danger. However, Jonathan Ranger, head of the Marine Asia-Pacific region at American International Group, Inc., has an attitude of “passing through the storm, not avoiding it.” At an industry conference in Singapore, he said: If the top heavy boxes are stacked higher, the ship can become more unstable in a storm. It puts a burden on fixing the container. The situation is even worse if the stack is top heavy. This can happen if the container’s bill of lading is incorrectly weighted. This is said to occur frequently by many in the industry. last year. “Therefore, if the cargo is heavy and the cargo planner raises it, we may no longer be in control while the ship is rolling.” Overworked crew also increase the risk. Neil Wiggins, Managing Director of Independent Vessel Operations Services Ltd, said that as the number of onboard personnel is reduced and the number of containers on the deck increases, it becomes increasingly difficult for the crew to check and effectively screw in all the bars. It states that it will be. .. The collapse of multiple layers of a 40-foot container during a raging storm is one of the most horrifying experiences for the captain and crew. According to Philip Eastell, founder of Container Shipping Supporting Seafarers, post-traumatic stress disorders in the crew are common. The industry is increasingly concerned about dealing with this situation. “Marine transportation is different than it was ten years ago,” said Rajesh Unni, founder of the Synergy Marine Group, which serves shipowners. “How do we adapt as an industry? It’s convenient to blame the captain, but we need to figure out how the port infrastructure needs to change and how the ship will pass. It is responsible for issuing safety certificates for vessels, and the port of call of the vessel is responsible for ensuring compliance with the rules for loading containers. The agency is regularly undertaken by a subcommittee on the carriage of cargo. He said he was considering the container issue and is planning the next issue. AIG rangers say companies need to be prepared to avoid storms and keep their vessels in good shape. These vessels are designed to carry boxes and suffering these losses-dare to say-is unacceptable “(update of the International Maritime Agency Subcommittee Meeting in the penultimate paragraph) Visit Bloomberg.com for articles. Subscribe now to get the most trusted business news sources. © 2021 Bloomberg LP

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