…and then there were two ships

First there was one ship…the MOL Comfort…

This photo of the MOL Comfort shows considerable hogging. Image credit: IANS

This photo of the MOL Comfort shows considerable hogging. Image credit: IANS

I am sure Conway Captain will be able to tell us what has happened here. One explanation is:

The container ship MOL Comfort sank today off Yemen after suffering catastrophic hull cracking near amidships. A Coast Guard official was quoted as saying, “The vessel hull broke into two off the Mumbai coast and the crew members were rescued from the ship in two life rafts and a life boat,” a Coast Guard official said.  The ship was loaded with 4,500 containers was bound from Jeddah to Singapore. 

While there has been no determination why the ship’s hull broke, it seems likely that misloaded cargo might be the culprit. When loading a container ship, there is always an imbalance between the weight of the ship and cargo pressing down and the buoyancy of the sea pushing up. Too much weight in the ends can break a ship in half, which is what appears to have happened here.

The ship has now broken in two.

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26 crewmembers of an MOL containership were forced to abandon ship Monday off Yemen after the ship suffered from catastrophic hull failure and reportedly sank.

The MV MOL Comfort, an 8,000 TEU-type containership cracked in half about 200 miles from the Yemeni coast at about 12’30″N 60′E while enroute from Singapore to Jeddah with a load of 7,041 TEUs. All 26 crew – made up 11 Russians, 1 Ukrainian and 14 Filipinos – escaped the sinking ship on two life rafts and a lifeboat.

According to a report by IANS News, the Indian Coast Guard in Mumbai diverted three vessels in the area to assist. The MV Yantian Express was first to arrive on scene and rescued the survivors.  The 2008-built MOL Comfort sank a short time later, the report said.

Weather at the time was strong winds and seas up to six meters.



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  • cows4me

    Cool, a convertible

    • yossarian1971

      Maybe the Somalis got themselves a torpedo?

  • Patrick

    Goff is mobilising – suit, shovel & bucket in hand.

  • peterwn

    Seemed the crew were all rescued. Give a thought to the wide range of prople whose cargo it was. OK insurance would have covered some of it, but there will be downstream disruption to many, many people dependent on the cargo, possibly including irreplaceable personal possessions.

  • Mickrodge

    I was thinking that peterwn,

    Does anyone know what the likelihood of any of the 4,500 containers being salvaged & secondary what sort of a risk will that many floating containers have to shipping in the region? I’ve heard the ocean is literally teeming with containers & there’s 5/8th of fuck all anyone can do about them.

    • coventry

      200 nautical miles off shore, one would hazard a guess that’s pretty deep water. Gulf of Aden max depth 2.7Km, avg 500m. Yep that’s deep

  • Kopua Cowboy

    Bloody hell, still afloat and in two bits! I guess they can be thankful it didnt hit a reef and then have the locals demanding they remove every last scrap…

  • JeffDaRef

    My inner nerd would like to say that its pretty impressive that a ship can break in half and both bits stay afloat!!

  • GregM

    John Clarke, aka Fred Dagg has the answer:

  • Steve (North Shore)

    Well the bit with the sharp end is somewhere else, but the bit with the blunt end can just keep going to where it was going.
    No doubt the vultures are on the beaches waiting, just as they were after Rena

  • niggly

    Haven’t noticed any Conway Captain comments of late – are things well in his household?

  • Anton

    Hi guys, here are the today’s positions of the aft and fore parts of
    the vessel: