‘Ever Forward’ Container Ship Successfully Refloated After More Than A Month
A giant container vessel that was stuck in the Chesapeake Bay for over five weeks is on the go, once again. The Ever Forward cargo vessel reached Annapolis at about 10 am on Sunday. Here, it is going to be anchored till it resumes its journey to Baltimore, the US. Coast Guard reported to WBAL-TV.
The 1,096-foot boat had been stuck in the Chesapeake Bay, off the Gibson Island coast, since 13 March. The Ever Given, its sister vessel had infamously blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week in March 2021. Although the vessel, which traveled to Hong Kong from the States, remained stuck for over a month, officials mentioned to Bloomberg that it has not yet disrupted trade.
It was on a brief sailing from Baltimore to Norfolk in Virginia, when it was stuck on the muddy ground, with 330 cargo containers lifted off with barges to help refloat it easily. The video showed seven tug boats towing the Ever Forward under the Chesapeake Bay Bridge at about 9.10 am on Sunday. This was the third time crew members had tried freeing the vessel.
The Coast Guard is providing the Ever Forward with a security zone while the tug boats continue transporting the vessel to a location toward the south of the bay where the officials will assess the situation.
Crew members will have to set a designated slot to onload hundreds of containers that were removed from the vessel in the past week to lighten the vessel and free it. Two barges had been used to take the containers back to the Baltimore port.
It is not clear when onloading will happen. Besides, the Coast Guard did not respond to a request for comment from the DailyMail.
The Ever Forward was supposed to call at four east coast ports after departing from China on 2 February. The vessel had been loaded with about 5,000 containers.
Crew members were able to get rid of 500 containers and dredged almost 20 feet of material on both sides to lighten its load and also pull it back into the channel. Around 10.30 am on Sunday, the vessel was moving at a speed of about 5.6 knots, per the tracking website named MarineTraffic.
The almost 200,000-ton MV Ever Given was wedged during a sandstorm on 23 March, blocking a passage from Asia to Europe that carries 10% of global maritime pumps and trade revenues into the Egyptian state coffers.