Thursday, May 2, 2013

Atlantic Cartier fire in Hamburg

1. Atlantic Cartier in the Narrows March 14, 2013.

A fire broke out on Atlantic Cartier while it was loading in Hamburg on the evening of May 1. At the time there were 70 to 80 new cars aboard, and it is reported that 12 were destroyed. Firefighters did a masterful job of fighting the fire by cooling the outside of the hull using fireboats and tugs, while battling the fire with CO2 from within. The risk of flooding and capsizing was recognized early and the ship appears to have maintained stability throughout. Not only that, but longshoremen unloaded the ship's deck cargo of containers, which included some hazardous materials.
The blaze was finally extinguished in the afternoon of May 2 (Hamburg time).
It is too early to state the severity of damage to the ship, but it will certainly be out of service for some time. Atlantic Container Line maintains its weekly transatlantic service with just five ships (there are usually calls in Halifax by one eastbound and one westbound ship each week.) To maintain the service they will have to charter in another ship, but it will not be easy to find one with the unique capabilities of the Atlantic Cartier and its sisters.
Currently the largest ConRo ships in the world, the five G3 class ships are due to be replaced with revolutionary G4 ships in 2015. ACL ordered the new ships in August of 2012.
For details and images see:


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