Friday March 26th 2021
“Dick Pic” painted in the water
Freighter lies like a stranded whale in the canal
For two days, rescue teams have been trying to free the wrecked super freighter “Ever Given” from the Suez Canal. So far it has faded, but the Egyptian government is optimistic. Shortly before arriving, the container ship was on a creative course.
The “Ever Given” continues to block the Suez Canal. According to rescue teams, the liberation of the stuck container ship could take weeks. This cannot be ruled out, said the head of the Bos company, Peter Berdowski, who told the “Nieuwsuur” broadcaster. The bow and stern of the 400 meter long ship had been pushed up on the sides of the canal. The “Ever Given” is thus “like a huge stranded whale”.
The assessment of a representative of the Egyptian government is more optimistic. Shipping on the canal between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean will be “resumed within 48 to 72 hours at the most,” said the advisor for seaports to Egypt’s head of state Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Mohab Mamisch. As the former head of the Suez Canal Authority, Mamisch explained that he had already witnessed several rescue operations. “I know every inch of the canal.”
By late afternoon, more than 200 ships were stuck on both sides of the canal, one of the most important waterways in the world. The world’s largest container shipping company Maersk, according to its own information, checked whether it should send its ships around the southern tip of Africa with an additional journey time of up to six days.
The enormous weight of the ship weighs on the sand on both sides of the canal, explains Berdowski: “We may have to work with a combination of weight reduction by fetching containers, oil and water from the ship, using tugs and dredging sand”. The Japanese owner Shoei Kisen apologized for the incident. He also confirmed that the work was “extremely difficult”. It is not clear when the ship can be made afloat again. There could be further delays if part of the cargo has to be removed from the ship. A higher tide is expected on Sunday, which could possibly help with the rescue, it said from shipping circles.
How the accident came about is still unclear. The master provided evidence of his maneuverability immediately before entering the canal. The Vesselfinder tracking website tweeted a picture of the route the freighter was taking while waiting for the signal to arrive. It doesn’t take a lot of imagination to see what the helmsman “drew” in the water: a penis. The “Dick Pic” is completed by two larger circles, which can be interpreted as buttocks.
A mistake? Rather unlikely. A spokesman for “Vesselfinder” confirmed to the “Vice” portal that the ship actually traveled the route that way. There is no room for conspiracy theories or for erroneous data. Here the route can also be followed by video. It is not unusual for ships to “meander around” while waiting to enter, a spokesman for Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement explained to “Spiegel”.
In the meantime, the creative navigator may have lost his lust for practical jokes, given the misery that the accident caused: around 30 percent of the world’s container volume and around twelve percent of all goods are shipped through the Suez Canal. “Every port in Western Europe will notice,” said a spokesman for the port of Rotterdam, the largest in Europe. Russia and Saudi Arabia, the two countries that send the most oil through the canal, are likely to be particularly hard hit. India and China, on the other hand, are the largest importers.
The traffic jam will also cost the German economy dearly. “That will keep us busy for at least another month or two,” said supply chain expert Joachim Schaut from the logistics service provider DB Schenker.