Only 750 containers lost this time. Small beer

I’ve been waiting for this to show up on the forum but it hasn’t – so here it is.

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It doesn’t say where the containers were lost or give any other details.

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Sure they did: “Pacific Ocean” - how much more do you need? :slight_smile:


Once again, a large container ship has lost a large number of containers in heavy weather in the Pacific. This time it is the “Maersk Essen”, which lost some 750 containers in the middle of the North Pacific.

Maersk confirmed the incident after four days, but provided hardly any details. According to the Maritime Executive, the incident likely took place about 1,000 kilometers northeast of Midway, the famous atoll almost halfway between the US west coast and the Asian east coast.

The 13,100 teu ship, sailing under the Danish flag, had left Xiamen in China for Los Angeles on 26 December. It operates on Maersk’s TP6 route between East Asia and North America. Maersk refers to heavy weather, but does not provide information about the wind force and wave height.

The Danish shipping company said in a statement that it regarded the container loss “as a very serious situation that will be immediately and thoroughly investigated.” The group also says it has notified all relevant authorities, including the US Coast Guard and the Danish Shipping Inspectorate.

According to the British damage assessment agency WK Webster, it is very likely that a large number of damaged containers are on board. This was also the case on the “MSC Zoe”, which lost some 340 containers in heavy weather north of the Wadden Islands two years ago.

The “Maersk Essen” is expected on January 22 in Los Angeles. Two similar cases of container loss have occurred in the North Pacific in recent months. On November 30, the mega container ship “ONE Apus” lost about 1,800 containers about 3,000 kilometers northwest of Hawaii. In early November it was bulls eye again when the “ONE Aquila” also probably lost more than a hundred containers in the North Pacific.

This series of events contradicts a report from the World Shipping Council last summer. It finds that the number of lost containers has fallen sharply in recent years and that they represent a minimal percentage of the total number of containers transported. According to the interest group, an average of only 800 containers per year have been thrown overboard in the past three years.


That average of 800 containers lost got shot all to shit.

For context, the World Shipping Council, an association of the major container shipping companies, representing 80% of the total global vessel container capacity, states that ships of its members, in total worldwide, lost an average of 1,382 containers annually during the period 2008-2019.

It seems the vessel is ETA Lazaro Cardenas, Mexico on 27 January. 750 containers were lost overboard due to “poor” weather what ever that is? I have never heard of poor weather. But maybe something was small in quantity, e.g. well-qualified crew or proper lashing? We will see! There were no US ports of refuge in the vicinity!
FYI a port of refuge is a port or place that the vessel diverts to when her master considers it is unsafe to continue the voyage due to peril that threatens the “common safety”, e.g. when there is a dangerous ingress of water into a vessel, a dangerous shift of cargo. the vessel adopts an angle of loll, there is a serious fire on board etc. Of course dropping cargo overboard does not require a port of refuge.

When such a deviation is made for the preservation from peril of property involved in a common maritime adventure, it will usually constitute a general average act and the costs of the deviation to stay at the port of refuge in general average, we are told. But in this case the vessel just proceeded to to Mexico for … what?

The ship was diverted due to extraordinary container port congestion in Southern California.

No, more likely they offload damaged containers/stacks at Lazaro Cardenas, reload intact containers and then they return to congested Los Angeles to unload/load as usual when a berth is free. I always wonder why ships go full speed to a congested port and then anchor there waiting - better slow down and arrive when the berth is free … to avoid waiting.

Extraordinary indeed. I haven’t seen so many ships let alone container ships anchored off of LA/LB since the early 2000s when the ILWU had a ‘lock out.’

Maybe because berths are allocated based on who arrived first in many cases??


Well, the port belongs to the City of Los Angeles and its mayor appoints commissioners to run the port for him. Sounds a recipe for congestion.

The longshoremen’s union successfully fighting automation and efficiency is the recipe for congestion in LA.

An analysis of the Zoe incident using scale models:

The authors added that there was “a great possibility that they [existing ships] will be forced to decrease their onboard cargo volume or operating speed”.

This exactly. Liner shipping has become near impossible to predict berth times because of berth congestion and poor management of the ports. Too many ships and not enough space or time to work them. 15 years ago I could set my watch to the pro-forma schedule. Now I am told to show up as soon as possible and hope for the best.

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It is a bit strange that there are no pictures or video’s of the damaged cargo to be found on the internet, except for this partial picture,

Some people believe storms hit ships while crew just watch it. Actually, ships always hit storms at too high speed with crew just watching.

Would disagree with that at some point. Although most know that being on time is crucial… weather has it’s own schedule. Can’t speak for others, an easy hand on the throttle and/or course change made things a bit easier on the crew and cargo. Never got blasted for being late due to weather. My shit got there in one piece.

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