This 51,000-Tonne Cargo Ship's Been Deliberately Grounded Near the UK

By Jamie Condliffe on at

This gigantic car transporter has been run aground — on purpose — after it began to list (lean to one side) just off the coast of the UK. It weighs 51,000 tonnes, is laden with 1,400 cars — and now needs to be righted.

This 51,000-Tonne Cargo Ship's Been Deliberately Grounded Near the UK

The Hoegh Osaka began to list shortly after it left the port of Southampton yesterday. It was then deliberately run aground just off the Isle of Wight. The ship is now sat in a stretch of water known as the Solent, leaning at 50 degrees. Ingar Skiaker, chief executive of Hoegh Autoliners, has explained:

"The captain and master and the pilot on board decided jointly to put the vessel on the sandbank to avoid any more serious problems. I think they executed their duties based on their best judgement and we're not second-guessing their actions right now. There has been no leakage of any oil or any other substances and that's our primary focus obviously now going forward, that we keep it that way."

The crew of 25 have been evacuated, and a salvage operation — expected to take days — is now under operation. So far, no oil has leaked from the ship, but it's not clear what's happened to the cars aboard it. [BBC]