A stuck container ship has brought maritime traffic to a grinding halt in Suez Canal. The container ship, operating under the name Ever Given, became lodged in the middle of the Suez Canal on Tuesday, forcing maritime traffic to back up in one of the world’s busiest waterways.
The Panama-flagged container ship was en route from China to the Netherlands and became stuck in the Egyptian canal about 6 nautical miles from the southern end of the estuary, while traveling north from the Red Sea to the Mediterranean.
Several tug boats have crowded around the ship for hours in an effort to free it.
The ship blocked traffic in the Suez Canal in both directions, apparently causing other ships to wait for the Ever Given to move before continuing their passage.
The Egyptian government’s canal authority, and Taiwan-based ship operator Evergreen Marine, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The Suez Canal is one of the busiest canals in the world, serving as a key link between Europe and Asia for container ships, oil tankers and other vessels. Millions of tons of cargo pass through it every day. The Egyptian government expanded the 150-year-old canal in 2015, in a bid to attract even more traffic and send more fees from shipping companies into government coffers.