Six tugs moved the "Vale Beijing" from the dock on Dec 7 at about 10 a.m. in the port in Sao Luis and towed it to a location seven miles outside the shipping channel to a water depth of 30 metres. The vessel had to be towed in a hurry because the aft was sinking down in an area considered shallow. There was only one meter left before touching the bottom. Water was steadily being pumped from the ballast system, and a team of eight technicians were enroute to PDM from South Korea's STX Pan Ocean. An engineer who came from South Korea was already aboard the vessel to assess the condition. The situation was estimated to be very serious. For the time being, there was no final solution in sight. The ship has cracks in two ballast tanks which had affected the stability. An investigation was launched into why such a new ship was damaged even before its maiden voyage. There were several hypotheses, f.e. faulty loading, material fatigue, or errors in the construction of the ship. All this has to be considered in the inquiry.