“Although the blockade was resolved relatively quickly, we are not yet back to normal operations,” said Habben Jansen. Not much would have been missing during the blockade and Hapag-Lloyd would have sent its ships on a detour around Africa. “I think we were 24 to 48 hours away from that decision,” said Habben Jansen. However, only six Alliance ships would have made their way around the Cape of Good Hope.
Almost 370 ships got stuck
The 400 meter long container freighter “Ever Given” blocked the Suez Canal as one of the busiest routes in the world for seven days from March 23 to 29. According to Hapag-Lloyd, this meant that 369 ships could no longer proceed, including 9 freighters from the Hamburg shipping company.
Freighters arrive in Europe
The ships affected are gradually arriving in Europe. When and with how much delay the freighters arrive in Hamburg depends, among other things, on how quickly they are cleared in Rotterdam beforehand. Hamburg is one of the last stops on the so-called northern route.
Other factors also confuse ship schedules
The Port of Hamburg Business Association expects five to ten percent more export volumes than usual in the coming weeks. Hamburger Hafen und Logistik AG (HHLA) has reserved additional space so that the containers with the goods waiting do not clog up. In addition to the corona pandemic or Brexit, the “Ever Given” accident is another factor that is messing up the ship schedule, said a HHLA spokeswoman for NDR 90.3. Hardly any freighter has reached Hamburg on time this year.
No ship traffic jams on the Elbe
Ships that block the Elbe near Hamburg as if drawn on a string of pearls will not be seen by the way. Each entry is coordinated by the Nautical Center and the giant containers are “parked” in the German Bight beforehand, if necessary.