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Car-carrier on fire and abandoned in the Nth Atlantic, with 2,500 VW and Porsche cars aboard


onetrack
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I guess one doesn't normally think of the issues that can occur at sea.. No pollution observed must refer to water pollution as I am sure those cars going up in flames cannot mean that the burning  paints, plastics, etc are not emitting air pollution,.

Edited by Jerry_Atrick
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I really am surprised that the car-carrier doesn't have a massive, inbuilt fire-suppression system on board, that would be capable of extinguishing any blaze before it took a major hold.

The insurance companies must be turning a whiter shade of pale at the thought of the level of payout here. The ship must be worth around $30M - $40M at least, and the cargo of 4000 vehicles must be worth around $1.2B to $1.5B at a minimum.

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The reports are that the insured value of the car carrier is USD$31.5M and the cargo is valued at over USD$200M. That's not as much as I would have thought, they must be making Bentleys, Porsches and Lambo's cheaper today.

Interestingly, the greatest angst is about the loss of the car carrier, of which there isn't a lot around - so the shipping lines and car manufacturers are now looking at constraints in shipping schedules, because there's nothing much available to replace the ship.

What a woeful time to be a car manufacturer! COVID-19 major workforce impacts, a shortage of computer chips limiting production, shipping arrangements already messy thanks to COVID-19 causing disruptions and a logjam of sea containers all ending up stranded, sales hammered by order cancellations (mostly last year) caused by COVID-19 job losses and uncertainty - and now a major ship fire! And don't mention the EV onslaught...!

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Would not be a problem to us if we had a car manufacturing industry, but that has gone, so I will have to stick with my diesel burning 4WD instead of the new electric vehicle I would like.

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The overall economics of a diesel burner are still very good, AFAIC. I won't be getting rid of my 2013 diesel Hilux traytop anytime soon, it's done less than 100,000kms, and I fully intend to keep it to 200,000kms.

I paid $15,000 for it in 2017, with 27,000 kms on the clock, although it did come without a tray (it was formerly a concrete company service vehicle). 

So, I had to build a tray for it, but that wasn't a problem, and I built the tray to my "oversize" dimensions, which provides 1.8M width by 2.5M length, which accommodates 2 pallets easily - as compared to the "scrimped" dimensions of the standard trays on offer - most of which, won't take 2 pallets. I also built it out of steel, and used 50 x 25mm RHS for floor bearers, which is much better than the cheap angle-profile of most of the commercial trays bearers.

 

It will need a huge reduction in EV purchase costs before I will look at one. Even the Missus's 2011 2.5L Camry Atara still provides us with great economy in running costs, and it's brilliant on fuel.

There are a large number of Tesla owners complaints about the poor build quality of the Teslas, but that's nothing less than what I'd expect from a company that came from nothing in a few years, and which has no track record.

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Nev, the ship may be Panamanian registered, but it's owned by Mitsui, who I thought would have been reasonably good with their maintenance. The simple problem with car-carrying ships is that it only takes one small short in one vehicle on board, and then the whole ship goes up like a Roman candle, thanks to vehicles being close together - but also with plenty of air space above them, to feed air in, to fuel any fire. There are no bulkheads or fire doors in these ships.

 

Edited by onetrack
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They probably have less fuel in them on average than the tassie ferries. There's some crap vehicles get on that. Modern Cars are pretty amazing the quality of them ex assembly line compared to say the 70's where the dealer had to nearly check everything and remove wax , before you took delivery of it. and oil seal replacements were common if the car came by ship or sat for long unsold. Nev

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The Felicity Ace is still burning, and specialist firefighting equipment is being sent to the ship to try and fully extinguish the fire. When it is extinguished, the ship will be towed to a European country or the Bahamas (I can't see much point in it being towed to the Bahamas, but there must be some reasons behind that choice).

There are reports that a number of cars contained Lithium-ion batteries (hybrids or full EV models?) and investigations are going to centre on whether the fire started in one of these batteries.

Because they now have a Lithium-ion fire, it is going to take vast amounts of water to fully quench it, as Li-ion batteries keep bursting back into flame when they are on fire.

 

https://gcaptain.com/felicity-ace-car-carrier-continues-to-burn-in-mid-atlantic/

 

Meantimes - it gets worse for the shipping insurance companies, as a Greek ferry, on its way from Italy to Greece has caught fire off Albania. The reports are it was carrying 153 vehicles (including an unspecified number of trucks), and no doubt one of the trucks or cars on board will more than likely be the source of this fire.

 

https://gcaptain.com/flames-engulf-grimaldi-ferry-euroferry-olympia/

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