KARACHI: The South Asia Port Terminal (SAPT) authorities on Tuesday started operation to recover shipping containers, which fell into the sea after two cargo ships collided in Karachi Port.
Containers which fell near to the berth have been identified and two cranes of the Karachi Port Trust (KPT) are busy recovering containers. It will take two to three days to recover all 21 containers, experts said. Pakistan Navy divers are also assisting in the operation. The cargo ships have been docked at Karachi Port and the damaged parts will also be fixed.
However, shipping activities at the terminal are reportedly going on as usual after a short pause on Monday.
Earlier on Monday, Hapag-Lloyd’s 8,000-TEU Tolten collided with the 6,350-TEU Hamburg Bay at South Asia Port Terminal, one of South Asia’s busiest seaports, after which loaded shipping containers fell into the sea. “Approximately 55-60 containers from the ships fell into the deep sea,” said port authorities.
The administration of the deep port, however, managed to avert possible damage to the cranes installed at the berth through a timely operation.
The sources said that initial investigation has revealed that the pilots of Karachi Port Trust (KPT), who took charge of the vessels, are responsible for this incident. The KPT’s pilots know deep sea routes and they tug the ships to the port. The sources further claimed that the containers are floating toward the channels made for breaking heavy waves and could possibly damage them if a proper action for removing the containers is not taken on time.
KPT officials said that their investigation team is trying to find out the reason for the accident and will submit a report after their return from the site of the collision.
The sources also informed this scribe that a similar incident had taken place two months ago because of a KPT pilot’s negligence, however, it was not reported to the media since it wasn’t as dangerous as this one.
A board comprising senior officers of KPT, SAPT and Ministry of Ports and Shipping have been formed to investigate the incident.