Tugs assist damaged container ship in blocked Kiel Canal
Tugs are handling a damaged container ship in the Kiel Canal, in Germany, after a propulsion failure caused the vessel to smash a lock gate. German salvage company Schramm is working with shipping company Peter Döhle to manoeuvre damaged 2004-built ship Akacia back into the seaway to transport it to a dock for surveys.
According to local reports, tugs Wolf and Holtenau are on site to manoeuvre the freighter away from the lock gate it damaged. Reports from Germany explained that a technical failure with an engine control unit caused 11,662 gt Akacia to crash into the Great Northern Lock of the Kiel Canal on 19 February.
The container ship, which was en route from Bremerhaven to St. Petersburg, Russia, partially severed the lock gate with its bow at a speed of 10 knots. This caused a partial closure of the canal and trapped Akacia.
Salvors lightened the freighter by pumping out ballast water. On 20 February, salvors were waiting for the right water levels to manoeuvre Akacia back into the canal. They can then work on repairing the severely damaged lock gate.
Also off northern Europe, tugs have been assisting a disabled fish factory ship and a cement carrier. In the seas off northwest Ireland, tug Ocean Challenger towed drifting Joseph Roty II to the port of Killybegs, in County Donegal. The ship was drifting for three days because a net had fouled its propeller.
In the English Channel, tug Cannis towed Arklow Shipping’s cement carrier Arklow Rival to the port of Fowey in southwest England on 19 February.