17 containers slip off ship,Gujarat on alerthttps://indianexpress.com/article/news-archive/web/17-containers-slip-off-ship-gujarat-on-alert/

17 containers slip off ship,Gujarat on alert

One contains high-density polyethylene,rest empty,says Gujarat Maritime Board

Seventeen containers on board a vessel slipped off Okha West and began floating in sea prompting the Gujarat Maritime Board to sound an alert for ships approaching Gulf of Kutch,a major corridor for crude oil imports.

“About 17 containers slipped from M V Rajeev Gandhi,a vessel container of Shipping Corporation of India,off Okha West coast on June 27 when it was on way to Mundra port,” Chief Nautical Officer,GMB,S C Mathur said on Sunday.

“The containers are floating in the sea posing danger to vessel traffic,” he said. Mathur said all the concerned authorities like the Indian Coast Guard (ICG),Director-General of Shipping and the SCI have been informed about the incident and GMB’s Vessel Traffic Management System in Gulf of Kutch is issuing alerts.

The ICG is keeping constant vigil on the container movement in the sea,he added. According to GMB,16 containers onboard M V Rajeev Gandhi that slipped,were empty,while one contains high-density polyethylene.

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The incident poses a threat to vessel traffic as a number of crude carriers come to Gulf of Kutch,since Gujarat is known as the oil and gas capital of the country. A tug from Jamnagar port has been deployed to keep vigil over containers and push them towards coast. “We have kept one tug Varun-1 on constant vigil for last three days and the same is moving around the location of containers to ward them off from channel and to warn passing vessels. VTMS too is conveying warnings (to ships),” Mathur said.

“Meanwhile,one of the containers has drifted and entered the deep water root off Okha port,posing a threat to vessel traffic,” he said.

The vessel has been held up at Mundra port,a GMB official said.