ONE Containership Requires Repairs After Suez Canal Grounding

Containership refloated in Suez Canal
ONE Orpheus was refloated and moved out of the Suez Canal last week (SCA photo)

Published Dec 11, 2023 1:12 PM by The Maritime Executive


Ocean Network Express (ONE) is advising customers that the ONE Orpheus which was involved in last week’s incident at the Suez Canal will require repairs before proceeding. The vessel which had been due to reach Rotterdam in the Netherlands at the end of this week has been holding in the anchorage off Port Said, Egypt since it was refloated and exited the Suez Canal early on December 7. 

According to the advisory to customers, it has been determined that the 104,525 dwt containership will “undergo temporary repair” starting today, December 11. No additional details were provided on the extent of the repairs required. The company is telling customers that it will “keep you updated on the progress and vessel’s schedule once more information will be available.”

Last week, ONE confirmed that the vessel, which has a capacity of 9,040 TEU and is 1,102 feet in length (336 meters), had grounded on December 6 after striking a floating bridge in the Suez Canal. Pictures showed the vessel diagonally across most of the northbound channel of the canal in an area north of Great Bitter Lake.

The canal authority sent four tugs to assist and after approximately nine hours the vessel was freed and able to resume the northbound journey in the canal. It reached the anchorage around 0200 local time approximately 16 hours after the incident was reported.

ONE said that underwater surveys were commencing on December 8 for a detailed assessment of the vessel’s condition. Photos from the accident showed a scrape or possibly a gash along the side of the hull from where the vessel penetrated the floating bridge. Claims consultant WK Webster in its casualty notice commented, “Reports indicate that the vessel sustained a significant breach to the starboard hull above the waterline as a result of the collision.”

No indication was given on how long the vessel might remain in Egypt. After the Even Given grounding in March 2021, the vessel was detained in Egypt for more than three months not departing till the beginning of July while negotiations were underway to settle the claims filed by Egypt for lost business during the six days the vessel was stuck in the canal and the harm caused to the canal’s reputation. That was in addition to the salvage claims. 

The Panama Maritime Administration in its investigation issued more than a year after the grounding was critical of the actions of the pilots saying they had been arguing about how to handle the vessel as it encountered strong winds and the current in the Suez Canal. They also criticized the captain of the Ever Given for not intervening in the navigation of the vessel.