Expert Explains Impacts of Blocking Suez Canal

(AP) Authorities must be “very careful” in how they move a cargo container ship which has blocked Egypt’s Suez Canal to avoid a “worst-case scenario”, a maritime shipping analyst said Wednesday.

Salvatore Mercogliano, a former merchant mariner and Associate Professor of History at North Carolina’s Campbell University, said the MV Ever Given vessel’s shutdown of the canal Tuesday will cause “a massive impact” on availability of goods in Europe and Asia.

Mercogliano said 50 ships pass through the man-made waterway dividing continental Africa from the Sinai Peninsula every day.

It wasn’t immediately clear what caused the Ever Given to turn sideways in the canal.

Evergreen Marine Corporation, a major Taiwan-based shipping company that operates the ship, said in a statement provided to The Associated Press that the Ever Given had been overcome by strong winds as it entered the Suez Canal from the Red Sea but none of its containers had sunk.

A Egyptian official, who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity as he wasn’t authorised to brief journalists, similarly blamed a strong wind in the area for the incident.

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