Fire ravaged Maersk Honam box ship to be rebuilt

CONTAINERSHIP Maersk Honam that was badly damaged last March in a tragic fire that claimed the lives of five crew members, will be reconstructed

17 January 2019 - 19:00
CONTAINERSHIP Maersk Honam that was badly damaged last March in a tragic fire that claimed the lives of five crew members, will be reconstructed. The ship has been cut into two parts at Drydock World Dubai in the United Arab Emirates from where it will be taken to South Korea for the repair works.

'In February 2019 the sound part of the vessel Maersk Honam will be transported on a heavy-lift vessel to Hyundai Heavy Industries Shipyard in South Korea, where it will be rebuilt,' said Maersk spokeswoman Janina Von Spalding.

In the aftermath of the Arabian Sea fire, the gutted vessel underwent thorough inspections and discharge operations at the UAE port of Jebel Ali last June, reported American Shipper.

'Maersk worked closely with the local authorities, insurance companies, the salvage company and other stakeholders to prepare a safe and environmentally friendly plan for clearing the vessel of all damaged containers, debris and firefighting water,' explained Ms Von Spalding.

The ship was then moved to Drydock World Dubai, where the 'sound, 228.5-metres-long section from midship to stern will be transported aboard the heavy-lift vessel Xin Guan Hua to South Korea. The heavy-lift vessel Xin Guan Hua has an overall length of 255 metres and can load up to 25 tonnes on the main deck.

'It is expected to deliver the sound section at Hyundai Heavy Industries shipyard in South Korea in March 2019, the same yard the vessel was built in,' revealed Ms Von Spalding. 'At the Hyundai Heavy Industries shipyard, the sound section of Maersk Honam will be rebuilt with a new forward section.

'The former forward section will be safely moored at Drydock World Dubai for continued removal of damaged containers and debris,' she added.

'Once cleaned, it will be recycled. In accordance with our Responsible Ship Recycling Standard (RSRS), relevant recycling options are currently being investigated and evaluated. The rebuilt vessel is expected to resume service again in the second half of 2019.'

The Maersk Honam was registered in Singapore and the ongoing investigation to determine the cause of the fire is being conducted by the authorities of the flag state.

Ms Von Spalding added Maersk 'started taking preliminary actions shortly after the incident and we will continue to examine processes closely and engage in discussions with other carriers, to increase fire safety in our industry.'

The company is working with the National Cargo Bureau and other carriers that are members of the Cargo Incident Notification System to inspect containers and determine whether shippers are properly declaring, labelling and packing hazardous materials.

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