Three months after 109 shipping containers fell overboard in the waters off British Columbia, Canada, 105 of them remain missing. The Canadian Coast Guard said four of MV Zim Kingston’s containers that had fallen overboard washed up on Vancouver Island; however, the remainder remains missing.
The coast guard said in a statement to Global News that despite efforts, it had failed to account for the location of the containers. It would deploy a sonar scan of the area and attempt to gauge the environmental impact of the containers that fell overboard.
Environmentalists have pointed out that the products the containers were carrying, including urinal mats, cologne, coolers, unicorn floaties, and baby oil, have been floating up on local shorelines.
According to one environmentalist, debris from the containers have been washing ashore as far north in Haida Gwaii and as far south in Victoria. The environmentalist said there were two issues at stake here: forward planning on how to prevent such occurrences from taking place again and the accountability for such disasters.
The 109 containers fell overboard from the Zim Kingston in October during a storm in an area that is approximately 41 nautical miles to the west of the entrance to the Strait of Juan de Fuca, the coast guard said.
It added that the ship’s owner had hired a third-party contractor to look for the missing containers, but the contractor must wait for the appropriate weather window to launch operations.
The coast guard has promised to monitor for debris likely to come from the Zim Kingston. The environmental impact of accidents of this nature has been underscored by some green activists.