On Monday, June 17, 2013, the 5-year old Mitsui O.S.K. Lines-operated 8000-TEU type containership MOL Comfort encountered an uncontrollable severe weather event on the Indian Ocean that caused fractures in two parts of the cargo vessel hull, and heavy water incursion in the hold.
Why Cargo Insurance is Critical
Thankfully, all of the cargo ship’s crew members were safely rescued, but the damage to the cargo vessel was extensive. The crippled ship was broken into two sections (fore and aft) on the water, and several cargo containers were lost or damaged as a result of the unfortunate circumstance.
Subsequent updates have been posted in the days following the incident:
Tuesday, June 18th:
- The fore section of the hull was drifting in an east-northeast direction, and the aft section was about 19 miles southwest from that point, drifting in the same direction.
- Tugboats were being employed to tow the sections, each of which was still laden with cargo containers.
- There was uncertainty at that point as to which of the 4,382 cargo containers on the ship might have been lost or damaged during the incident.
- No initial indication of a major oil leak was detected near the site.
Wednesday, June 19th:
- Fore and aft sections were still loaded with cargo containers.
- Vessel parts were drifting at a speed of approximately 2 knots in an east-northeast direction.
- A patrol boat departed from Port of Jebel Ali, U.A.E. to monitor the state of the container vessel and cargo, and to prepare for impending towing operations.
Thursday, June 20th:
- MOL confirmed that the aft section of the cargo container ship was drifting in an east-northeast direction, with the majority of containers remaining intact.
- Due to adverse weather, visibility was limited and the status of the vessel’s fore section and cargo remained to be confirmed.
- The anticipated arrival date of the Port of Jebel Ali, U.A.E. patrol boat that departed on June 19th to the ocean site was projected as June 24th.
- MOL contracted with a salvage company to rescue the cargo and hulls.
- MOL indicated that no large volume of oil leakage had occurred as of this date.
Friday, June 21st:
- The fore and aft sections of the cargo vessel continued to drift in an east-northeast direction.
- The majority of the container ship’s cargo was confirmed to be aboard the fore and aft sections of the vessel.
- MOL further assured that no large volume of oil leakage had occurred around the site.
We will continue to follow developments on the ongoing status of the MOL Comfort container vessel, and share important updates in the future. You can find up-to-the-minute reporting on the incident at the World Maritime News website.
Ocean Cargo Shipping
At ETC International, or greatest concern is not only for the protection of our shipping customers’ merchandise, but also for the oceans over which that cargo is transported. We care about our clients, and we care about keeping our oceans clean – so we dedicate our utmost effort, time and expertise to ensuring that your cargo safely reaches its intended destination.
But even with the most powerful equipment, state-of-the-art technology and utmost attention to detail and procedures, an uncontrollable act of nature or unforeseeable catastrophic event can still occur, and it is for this reason that we highly encourage anyone shipping containers overseas to obtain cargo shipping insurance. We make it simple to do so by providing all necessary information so our shipping customers may make the most informed decisions possible, and we assist in the process by enabling commercial and private parties to obtain cargo insurance through our company as part of our shipping services.
You can request a custom quote online for the All Risk (including War Risk) and FPA (Total Loss/Catastrophic) Coverage cargo insurance we make available by sending us a message with your questions and concerns. Click the button below to submit your message and we will promptly respond with detailed answers to your inquiry.