Maersk Line said the Emma Maersk
is being towed to a repair facility in Palermo, Italy, for further repairs.
In February the containership, the largest in Maersk's fleet, experienced an ingress of water in the engine room just after it commenced southbound transit through the Suez Canal en
route to Asia. The captain decided to terminate the planned voyage and
go alongside the nearby Suez Canal Container Terminal (SCCT).
The company said the
exact cause of the incident is still being investigated, but it has been
confirmed the water came in through a breach in the stern thruster
Palle Laursen, Maersk Line’s head of ship management in Copenhagen, said "once (the vessel) gets to the repair facility it will still be several months before repairs are completed.”
The ship was loaded with containers equivalent to 13,537 TEUs, of which 6,425 TEUs were full. Maersk said alternative arrangements for the loaded boxes on the ship were made whereby sensitive cargo was put on board ships in its existing network shortly after the incident. The last of the Asia-bound cargo was loaded on the Maersk Kokura
on Feb. 18. - Chris Dupin