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Old 22-01-2021, 10:53   #31
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Originally Posted by ameehan View Post
IMHO people are looking at this problem from the wrong end of the telescope. Merchant vessels pay dues on gross tonnage ( a volumetric measurement), the volume of the enclosed cargo spaces . If the rules were changed to make it uneconomic to carry containers as deck cargo and to carry them securely in enclosed cargo spaces the problem would disappear overnight.

To fully enclose all containers would add a huge weight high above waterline and greatly complicate loading and offloading. Besides the cost of the structure, fewer containers could be carried. Don't count on big shipping interests to go along with any such plan.
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Old 22-01-2021, 11:17   #32
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Not if the contents are lighter than water*. Those things floating about loose are a heck of danger to we small boaters. And them that sink with toxins aboard are sure to pollute and often in very, very, very deep waters where we have no idea of the results -- but it's safe to assume we will eventually pay the price and then wonder "what in the world we're they thinking?!"

* Consider contents that are wrapped well in the ubiquitous plastic bags (holding a surplus of air) which seems to be practically everything.
Yep, while I'm not known for my tree hugging, I'd be much more concerned about all that crap in the ocean than someone hitting it. Perhaps the only solution would be to have a comprehensive way of retrieving those wayward containers before they manage to sink.
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Old 22-01-2021, 11:21   #33
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

While offered as a supplemental note, the film starring Robert Redford, "All is Lost" is interesting as it presents a fictionalized account of what one sailor would do after a container holes his vessel. The movie has almost no dialog and it was a great creative decision not to have any voice overs as to what the Redford character was thinking.
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Old 22-01-2021, 12:03   #34
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

Maybe the UN can impose some intelligent regulations?
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Old 22-01-2021, 12:30   #35
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Originally Posted by RiverRat37 View Post
https://www.wsj.com/articles/maersk-...=hp_lista_pos5It's out of control. If nothing else, read the last 2 paragraphs of the article, which read:
--------------------------------------
Maritime insurance executives said roughly 3,000 containers have been lost at sea over the past two months.

The World Shipping Council, a Washington-based trade body representing liner companies, said in a report last July that between 2008 and 2019 on average 1,382 containers were lost at sea each year.
----------------------------------------
... which is 1382 X 12 years = 16,584.
I don't agree that it is out of control. There are currently almost 100 vessels carrying in excess of 20,000 containers, hundreds of vessels carrying between 10 and 20 thousand units. All containers eventually sink unless they wash up.

And what would be the point of fitting them all with GPS, who's going to go and retrieve them with ships fitted with retrieval gear? Someone suggested the Navy bombs them. Didn't say which Navy, but is chasing around the ocean after errant containers that might well have sunk themselves by the time you get to their position good use of tax payer money, irrespective of who's navy? I can think of better uses for my tax dollar.

There was a post saying the US should have a ban of buying stuff from China. That is a flippant piece of racism, but that aside perhaps a better suggestion might to convince Americans to stop buying imported goods. The reality is we now live in a junk world and irrespective of country, people have become consumers of 'stuff'. And so Chinese, Indian, Vietnamese and many other manufacturers make lots of stuff.

Perhaps more concern should be given to the millions of tonnes of rubbish that is polluting seas and oceans and beaches everywhere. I've never seen a floating container but I can't go 100 metres without seeing garbage of every type. I can't go to a beach now without seeing garbage.
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Old 22-01-2021, 12:40   #36
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Originally Posted by sailingabe41ds View Post
This is nothing new.....if you look it up the volume of containers lost it has been in the the thousands yearly for decades. Given the there are 5-6 of million containers crossing on any given day and hundreds millions a year I am surprised the numbers aren't greater.
That said, it does present a hazard if these things don't sink. If you put a gps tracking device...who is going to enforce it? You think China is going to go out its way to pick up their sh*t? Unless the whole world unites...it wont happen and with the new administration in the US I doubt anything will happen.

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Old 22-01-2021, 12:56   #37
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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I'd be interested to know if any cruisers have seen one floating. Not that I doubt they do just what are the odds
Seen quite a bit of wood.
We sailed past one. Missed it by less than 10 meters. Only one corner was sticking up about 2m above water level. Scary.
This one reason we now have a very strongly built aluminium boat.

We've also passed a couple of logs that were bigger than our boat. One was on a beautiful calm day and we were between Panama and the Galapagos. We circled round it and caught a big Mahi Mahi (Coryphaena hippurus) that dashed out from under the shade.
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Old 22-01-2021, 12:59   #38
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Originally Posted by DefinitelyMe View Post
I think that's actually something like the probability of encountering a container within any given randomly-selected acre, assuming the containers are distributed randomly.

An acre is 43,560 feet squared. 43,560 feet is 7.17nm. So every time you sail 7.17nm you enter a 'new acre' and thus compound the probability.

Disclaimer: the above is very likely mostly probably maybe definitely nonsense. But I think the principle holds true....... :-)
An acre is NOT 43,560 feet squared. It is 43,560 square feet. You are out by a factor of 43,560. If the acre you are talking about is square you will not enter "a new one" every 7.17 nm, but more like every 208 feet.

It's still a very low probability that you will hit a container - especially considering most of them sink.
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Old 22-01-2021, 13:03   #39
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Maybe the UN can impose some intelligent regulations?
Surely you gest.
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Old 22-01-2021, 13:11   #40
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

The solution is simple.The UN must mandate that all containers must be stacked athwartship.
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Old 22-01-2021, 13:15   #41
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

Containers are not water tight. The bottoms have wooden floors. Floating or sinking depends on the buoyancy of the cargo.
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Old 22-01-2021, 13:53   #42
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Containers are not water tight. The bottoms have wooden floors. Floating or sinking depends on the buoyancy of the cargo.
It would only float if it was filled with ducks or witches.
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Old 22-01-2021, 13:56   #43
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

If someone encounters a floating container ( but not hitting it ), what is a good practice?
Can it be traced back to the cargo ship? Home port? Insurance company? There must be something positive that can be done...If it were reported correctly now, could a path towards the long term good be established?
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Old 22-01-2021, 14:09   #44
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

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Just for grins, and roughly speaking...

Say 2000 lost a year;

Container footprint 8' x 40' = 320 ft sq x 2000 = 640,000 sq ft total divided by 44000 (acre sq footage) = 15 acres

89,600,000,000 acres (size of oceans) divided by 15 = 5,973,333,333.33

So chances are almost 6 billion to one against you encountering one.


Have you considered knitting?
Another way of looking at it, assuming the containers are spread out uniformly (which they aren't):

There are 140 million square miles of ocean and 2000 containers. This is 1 container per 70,000 square miles. sqrt(70000) = 265.

In every 265 mile x 265 mile section of ocean, there is 1 container ... this also means I can expect to hit 3 of them on every 100 mile passage because I have the proven ability of finding every stray nail on every road trip.
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Old 22-01-2021, 14:48   #45
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Re: Container ship dumps containers in Pacific

Never seen one in 30+ years sailing. Would be interesting to do a count of how many people here have seen a floating container with their own eyes.
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