Doing difficult things in difficult places taken to new levels
Since Svitzer started operating in the Suez Canal in late November 2019, the two tugs Svitzer Port Said 1 and Svitzer Port Said 2 have completed more than 5,450 jobs – some more unusual and demanding than others.
On Tuesday 23 March 2021, 400m-long container vessel Ever Given ran aground from the south entrance of the Suez Canal, thus blocking one of the most important waterways in the world and suspending both the north-bound and south-bound convoy. The Suez Canal has a daily capacity of approximately 50 – 85 vessels and soon hundreds of ships were caught up in the traffic snarl in both directions of this global trade artery, which carries about 12% of global trade.
Immediately after Ever Given ran aground, the Suez Canal Authorities began their efforts to re-float the large container vessel and the two Svitzer tugs – Svitzer Port Said 1 and Svitzer Port Said 2, which operate daily in the Suez Canal – were called to assist the authorities.
The efforts to dislodge the Evergreen vessel from the Suez Canal continued for days and more tugs as well as dredgers were called in to assist. Svitzer crews worked around the clock to support the re-floating of the vessel and finally on Monday 29 March, the efforts were successful.
Commenting on Svitzer’s role in the operation, Nicolai Vinther Friis, Managing Director Svitzer AMEA says:
“We are very proud to have assisted our trusted partner, the Suez Canal Authorities in their efforts to re-float the container vessel Ever Given and thereby ensuring global supply chains and critical infrastructure. Our highly skilled crews on board the two tugs Svitzer Port Said 1 and Svitzer Port Said 2 have worked around the clock supporting the SCA since Ever Given ran aground last Tuesday morning and we are happy that the combined efforts of everybody involved have resulted in a successful outcome, taking less than a week to dislodge and re-float Ever Given.
Svitzer started operating in the Suez Canal in late November 2019 with two 85 TBP ASD tugs, Svitzer Port Said 1 and Svitzer Port Said 2. Since the beginning of the contract, Svitzer has performed more than 5,450 jobs, including more than 75 escorting operations through the Suez Canal and more than 5,275 berthing and unberthing operations. On average, Svitzer assists 10-12 vessels per day.