More than 320 ships are stuck behind the huge 400-metre-long container ship, which became lodged across the Suez Canal on Tuesday. Over the weekend, numerous attempts were made to free the Ever Given during high tide after officials deployed heavy-duty machine to dredge 20,000 tonnes of sand. And in the early hours of Monday morning, the teams struck success as water started flowing under the tanker to bring the Ever Given afloat.
About 12 tugboats joined the rescue operation at the weekend and managed to shift the ship 30 degrees in two directions on Saturday.
Footage posted on Twitter shows the tugboats honking their horns to celebrate the victory, posted with the caption: “Ever Given has moved two inches, all tug bats happy.”
Dredgers, including a specialized suction machine that can extract 2,000 cubic meters of material every hour, are continuing to dig around the ship’s bow into Sunday.
Efforts to refloat the Ever Given will continue again today,
And crews will be given extra help today when a spring tide will raise the canal’s water level by up to 18 inches.
The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) said Ever Given had been mostly straightened along the eastern bank of the canal/
Chairman Osama Rabie said: “It is very possible that by today noon shipping activity would resume, god willing. We will not waste one second.”
He added it could take from 2-and-a-half to three days to clear the backlog, with some 369 ships waiting behind the tanker to pass through the canl.
Where is the Suez Canal ship now?
According to the latest shipping tracking data, the Ever Given is positioned at coordinates 30.01764 N / 32.58022 E in the Suez Canal.
You can see the ship’s current location in the maps above, along with the growing traffic building behind it.
The container ship, which was built in 2018 and currently sails under the flag of Panama, was due to arrive in Rotterdam, Holland on March 31.
How did the Ever Given get stuck in the Suez Canal?
Since the container ship became wedged on Tuesday, the Ever Given has been the subject of thousands of memes.
The hilarious images question how the ship, which has entirely blocked the through route, was able to get stuck on a diagonal in the canal in the first place.
It was initially reported the 200,000-tonne vessel ran aground due to high winds during a sandstorm that affected visibility.
However, experts now say human error is likely to have come into play.
Mr Rabie confirmed weather conditions were “not the main reasons” for the ship’s grounding.
He said: “There may have been technical or human errors.
“All of these factors will become apparent in the investigation.”
Yukito Higaki, president of Shoei Kisen, said the ship did not appear to be damaged, adding: “The ship is not taking water. Once it refloats, it should be able to operate.”