Floating cranes to fish out containers off Mumbai ports

Floating cranes have been deployed to fish out containers that toppled from MSC Chitra, which is sinking off the Mumbai coast, a meeting called by Cabinet Secretary K M Chandrasekhar was informed today.

Last Updated: Aug 10, 2010, 21:51 PM IST

New Delhi: Floating cranes have been
deployed to fish out containers that toppled from MSC Chitra,
which is sinking off the Mumbai coast, a meeting called by
Cabinet Secretary K M Chandrasekhar was informed today.

Cranes mounted on barrages have moved closer to the
sinking ship to collect falling or floating containers. MSC
Chitra started sinking after it collided with another vessel
MV Khalijia on Saturday.

Jawaharlal Nehru Port and the neighboring Mumbai Port,
which handle about 40 per cent of India`s export traffic,
closed the same day as hundreds of containers, which fell from
the Mediterranean Shipping Co`s MSC Chitra, blocked the sea
lanes.

The closure of the two ports disrupted shipments of goods
including petroleum products, grains and automobiles. About
one-and-half dozen ships were stranded at the two ports and
another 15 were waiting to dock following the shutdown.

Indian Navy is doing a survey of containers that hit the
bottom of the sea and the locations would be marked so that
ships can avoid while using the navigational channel, an
official who attended the meeting said.

The spill of diesel and lubricant oil from one of the
ships was not of alarming proportion, the meeting was
informed.

While barrages have moved closer to the sinking ship, a
vessel is being mobilised to empty the ship of any remaining
oil to avoid further spillage.

MSC Chitra had 1,219 containers on board, of which 31
held hazardous chemicals and pesticides, when it collided
with the MV Khalijia.

The Khalijia 3, owned by Kuwait-based Gulf Rocks Co., was
able to safely dock after the collision.

-PTI