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The Dangers of Shipping Containers and Boating

14.12.2015 - Posted by Updated On 14.12.2015    

It's rare that shipping containers fall off a vessel, but occasionally they do and they can be very dangerous to those boating and yachting in the area. Container vessels typically travel in standard lanes that are commonly used by all types of oceanic traffic, so if a container goes overboard it's likely that it will remain in the general area; however the odds of hitting a shipping container are slim.

How do Containers Go Overboard

It's estimated that somewhere between 675 and 10,000 shipping containers go overboard every year. Yes, that's a wide range, and personally we'd estimate that it's closer to the lower end of the range. This number is provided by the World Shipping Council, an organization that represents over 90% of the global container ship capacity.

Containers typically go overboard due to a storm, like last February in California when 19ft swells and 20mph winds knocked 12x 40' shipping containers off the deck of the Seattle bound Manoa. Also, just last week off the coast of Florida it was reported that a storm was the likely cause of 25 containers falling overboard near Port Canaveral.

Why Are Overboard Containers Dangerous?

Overboard shipping containers can be very dangerous to all types of seagoing vessels and water craft. If properly sealed, and they nearly always are, they'll float just under the surface of the water and be nearly invisible unless you're really paying attention. No matter if it's a fiberglass or steel hull, colliding with a container at any speed will cause serious damage to a boat of any size. sunk shipping container

What to Do If You See a Container

If you see a container, no matter if it's in the ocean or washed up on the shore, call the Coast Guard immediately. It's important not to try to open the container because you don't know what's inside. It could be cargo as innocuous as bed sheets, but it could also be carrying batteries or other chemicals that could react with water.

We can say with some confidence that none of the shipping containers listed for sale on have been thrown overboard, but if you need a new or used shipping container of any size you can contact any of active sellers on through the listing pages. If you don't see a shipping container listed in your area feel free to complete the request form and one of our registered sellers will contact you.

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