Suez Canal vessel traffic mostly unaffected by colliding vessels
The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) said that it has successfully handled the navigational emergencies in the waterway and technical failure sustained by an LNG carrier and a tanker during their transit through the canal on Wednesday.
The LNG carrier, BW Lesmes, came to a sudden stop in the waterway on Wednesday “due to a technical failure in steering and machinery.” After the incident, oil tanker, Burri, made a “slight contact” with the halted vessel.
According to SCA, BW Lesmes’ loss of steering coincided with a strong water current, which resulted in the tanker Burri making a slight contact with the LNG carrier.
The authority handled the breakdown of the vessels immediately with the aid of tugboats, and initial inspection showed that “there were no significant damages or any pollution incidents in the vicinity of the LNG carrier and the tanker,” SCA’s chairman Adm. Ossama Rabiee said.
SCA tugboats were deployed to tow and moor the tanker Burri, while the LNG carrier BW Lesmes was connected to four tugboats to tow it away from the canal’s navigational waterway.
The collision did not cause any major disruption and vessel movement was back to normal in both directions within a few hours, Rabiee added.
Eight vessels in front of the incident were not impacted, but 22 vessels in the southbound convoy behind the stopped vessels resumed transit later. The entering time for convoys on 24 August was slightly delayed, according to GAC Hot Port News.
This is the second significant incident due to a technical failure in the canal this year. In January, the bulk carrier, MV Glory, grounded for a few hours in the Suez Canal, raising concerns about a possible blockade.