Over 300 Ships Now Stranded As Suez Canal Authority Chairman Says "Human Error" Contributed To Crash



Update (1653ET): Egypt Today Magazine reports Ever Given has moved "17 meters towards the north, and there are positive indications that the ship would be refloated soon because of the high tide today." With rising sea levels tonight, Lieutenant-General Osama Rabie, Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority (SCA), said the containership might refloat. 

Egypt Today Magazine says the best time to refloat the stranded containership could be sometime tonight "due to the highest tidewater and the wind today is strong and helps the ship move towards the northeast."

Rabie said the vessel moved 30 degrees in both directions on Saturday.

This is positive news, but the massive containership remains stuck in the canal as more than 300 ships are waiting to transit one of the world's most important shipping lanes. 

More than 300 vessels are log-jammed at either end of the Suez Canal on Saturday, though an increasing number of vessels were being diverted to the southern tip of Africa, also known as the Cape of Good Hope. 

Lieutenant-General Osama Rabie, Chairman of the Suez Canal Authority (SCA), said at least 14 tugboats and a dredging ship worked around the clock to free the stranded containership 'Ever Given'.

Rabie said 9,000 tons of ballast water were removed from the ship. Dredgers had removed some 20,000 tonnes of sand from around its bow by Friday, and the rudder and propeller system of the vessel was restarted.

He said the stern of the vessel started to move last before refloating efforts stopped.

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