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Ever the same? Container vessel Ever Forward runs aground Chesapeake Bay, reminds of Suez Canal incident

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The Evergreen family of ships seems to notoriously get stuck a lot. Last year around this time, the Ever Given found itself wedged in the Suez Canal, blocking all traffic through the crucial pass for six days. This time, it is the sister ship Ever Forward that has run aground the Chesapeake Bay near Maryland in US. The 11,850 TEU and 334 meter Ever Forward was on its way from the Port of Baltimore to the Norfolk Port in Virginia when it stopped abruptly in the Bay around 9PM (local time) on Sunday.

As of now, the aground ship is not causing any disruption in traffic movement in the Bay to the Port of Baltimore, according to the Maryland Port Administration. Efforts to refloat the vessel are in process, however, considering the size and weight of the ship, the absence of favourable tides will act as a deterrent. A lot of tugging power and dredging would still be required to refloat the ship. Favourable tides are expected only around late March for the tugging efforts to yield positive results. Till then, nearby ships have been asked to reduce their speeds and travel in one-way traffic as they pass the vessel.

As per the sources, the ship was traversing through the Craighill Channel, which is about 50 feet deep. However, it drifted away from its charted course and entered shallow waters around 25 feet deep. The ship requires a depth of atleast 43 feet to move.

Evergreen Marine Corp, the vessel operator has also arranged for divers to inspect the ship for any damages, apart from launching an investigation to what caused the Ever Forward to run aground in the first place. The ship carries dry cargo and no hazardous materials. It’s not yet clear what kind of merchandise may be stuck aboard the vessel.

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