Monday, March 18, 2024

Morning Celesta - long way round


The Eukor auto carrier Morning Celesta arrived in Halifax today, March 18. Its most recent port calls have been on the typical Wallenius Wilhelmsen Ocean (WWO) transatlantic route, but how it got here is a longer story. (Wallenius Wilhelmsen is the parent company to Eukor, and Eukor ships are frequent callers here for WWO.)

Tugs Atlantic Oak (forward) and Atlantic Bear (aft) guide the ship into Eastern Passage toward Autport.

Going back to late 2023 the ship arrived in Australia from Europe via South Africa. Then in early January 7-8 the ship was in Shanghai. Not an unsual port for a car boat - particularly one with the name "Celesta" - because Hyundai Beijing builds the Celesta model sedan in China. Eukor was established to carry Korean built cars to the world, but its next port overshot Korea by a wide margin.

It was reported on January 26-27 in Mombassa then February 4-6 in Durban. Subsequent ports were Luanda February 11-12, Abidjan February 17-18, Dakar February 21, finally arriving in Zeebrugge February 29.  When it sailed on March 1 it headed for Goteborg arriving March 3 and sailing March 4. It then stopped in Bremerhaven March 6-8 before heading for Halifax.

Most shipping lines are avoiding the Red Sea and Suez Canal and auto carriers are no exception. Major diversions such as this one will not be unusual particularly at this time of year when car buying picks up and demand is high.

The line boat Roseway scurries past as tugs turn the Morning Celeste.

 The Morning Celeste dates from 2008 when it was delivered by Hyundai Samho. The 57,542 gt, 21,055 dwt ship has a capacity of 6,645 CEU. It has twelve decks a stern ramp and a side ramp. 

It's next scheduled port of call is New York, March 20. The usual WWO routing would take the ship to several other US ports before returning to Zeebrugge, but this ship may not be typical.


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