Wedged container ship ‘could soon be refloated’

Wedged container ship 'could soon be refloated'
The ship's Japanese owners said tugboats and dredgers were working to free the ship. Source: EPA
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Daily US Times:The large container ship trapped in the Suez Canal could berefloat as soon as Saturday, the vessel’s Japanese owners have said.

President Yukito Higaki of Shoei Kisen told that 10 tugboats had been deployed to dredge the banks and canal bottom.

The United States has also offered to send help, including a team of US Navy experts.

The Ever Given container ship, which sizes four football pitch, became wedged in the canal on Tuesday, forcing companies to reroute other ships around Africa.

The blockage in the Suez Canal has also caused a huge traffic jam of ships of more than 200 ships in the Red Sea.

In a press conference in Japanese city of Imabari, Mr Higaki told that they were “continuing work to remove sediment as of now, with additional dredging tools”.

He added that ship crews were hoping to dislodge the ship, which is one of the biggest container ship in the world, as early as Saturday evening Tokyo time, the Asahi Shimbun newspaper reported.

He said: “The ship is not taking water. There is no problem with its rudders and propellers. Once it refloats, it should be able to operate.”

Meanwhile on Friday, Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM), the ship’s technical manager, said that an attempt to refloat the vessel had failed.

A specialised suction dredger, which can shift 2,000 cubic metres of material every hour, arrived on site on Thursday, it added.

White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki also said the US had offered help to get the Suez Canal reopened, and that they were “tracking the situation very closely”.

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