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Marine Incident Alert – ONE APUS

The vessel ONE APUS, sailing under the flag of Japan, suffered a loss of 1,816 containers overboard, with many more damaged remaining on board following a massive container stack collapse onboard the vessel on the 30th November. 

This incident occurred approximately 1,600 nautical miles northwest of Hawaii, reportedly during severe weather.

ONE APUS was proceeding from Yantian, China to Long Beach, California, USA on a rotational calling at the following ports prior to the incident: Rotterdam (Netherlands); Hamburg (Germany); Antwerp (Belgium); Southampton (UK); Jeddah (Saudi Arabia); Suez Canal (Egypt); Singapore; Laem Chabang (Thailand); Cai Map (Vietnam); Hong Kong, and Yantian Guangdong (China); Long Beach and Oakland (USA) and Yokohama (Japan). 

The vessel’s owner, Chidori Ship Holding, and manager, NYK Shipmanagement have decided to abandon the passage to North America and return to Japan arriving in Kobe on 8th December. 

A full safety inspection of the vessel and its remaining cargo will take place with the assistance of local emergency services to ensure that there is no threat to people or the environment posed by the dislodged and damaged containers that remain on deck.

Once it’s declared safe, surveyors from the various stakeholders will make their initial assessments whilst stowage planners and stevedores formulate and implement a plan to ensure the safe removal of the remaining units. Then a thorough evaluation will be made on the exact number and type of containers that have been lost or damaged and damage to the vessel. 

There has been no indication when customers could learn the status of their freight –whether that be lost at sea, damaged during transit or in deliverable condition.

In addition to recovery issues arising of lost and/or damaged cargo, the schedule for the ONE APUS seems almost certain to be delayed which may therefore also adversely affect any time sensitive or refrigerated cargoes on board.

The ONE APUS has a capacity of 14,000 teu (twenty foot equivalent containers) and with the loss of 1,816 containers will be considered a significant loss of containers without a vessel sinking. To date, there is no indication of the cause of this casualty. 

NTI have made arrangements for surveyors to be on standby in order to investigate the cause of the incident and to attend to any cargo surveys as may be necessary or possible. Further surveys may need to be undertaken to affected units at final ports of destination in due course as well. If any of your clients or their cargo is known to be onboard the vessel, please let us know as soon as possible so that our surveyors can be on the lookout for the cargo as it is taken from the ship or determined to be lost overboard.

Whilst General Average has still not been declared, NTI remain ready to provide insured’s with guarantees that might be required for the release of cargo. Given the scale of the incident and the extraordinary costs being incurred, the declaration of General Average now seems to be a likely eventuality. 

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