The US Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Savannah is examining how a motor vessel had run aground near Fort Jackson in the Savannah River on Tuesday night.
At around 6:09 p.m., the Coast Guard staff was informed that the 1,091-foot Maersk Surabaya vessel loaded with cargo and passing via the shipping channel, had moored itself to the river’s bottom.
The Sector Charleston watchstanders dispatched a 45-foot Response Boat-Medium (RBM) crew from Station Tybee to create a 509-foot safety zone around the motor vessel. Meanwhile, seven tugs had repositioned the cargo vessel to the center of the channel while the port pilots coordinated the waterway closure temporarily.
Per the Coast Guard, no pollution or injuries were reported and the vessel is safely moored now.
Deepening of the 32-mile shipping channel was through by March, bringing the river to a high tide of about 54 feet and a depth of about 47 feet.
Per data collected by the Fort Pulaski tide gauge, the tide level was at a midpoint of five feet when the vessel was grounding.
The deepening project worth $973 million was a part of the Georgia Ports Authority’s effort to hike the capacity at the Port of Savannah which remains one of the busiest container ports in the nation.
The Savannah River is a federal waterway under the jurisdiction of the US Coast Guard.