The massive ore-carrier Vale Beijing was reported to be towed to Fortaleza, Brazil for repairs. The vessel is to be anchored in water clearer to allow divers to make repairs to the hull. The latest report states the hull has suffered multiple large cracks in the outer hull which allowed water ingress into the cargo hold. Brazilian authorities have requested the owners to have the fuel removed from the vessel to prevent any oil pollution being released. No details have been released to the cause of the cracks in the ballast tanks at this time. A recent report states the design of the Vale Beijing was altered from the other massive Valemax ore carriers constructed at other shipyards. The report did not state if this change may have weaken the vessel’s structural integrity, but it may be a factor. The owners of the Vale Beijing, STX Pan Ocean Co. stated the vessel would be repaired and be placed back into service.
The 361 meter long, 404,389 dwt dry bulk carrier Vale Beijing suffered water ingress while loading iron ore at Ponta da Madeira, Brazil. The VLOC (Very Large Ore Carrier) suffered multiple cracks in it’s ballast tanks. The cracks have allowed water to flood into the No. 7 hold. The Vale Beijing was scheduled to load 384,000 tons of iron ore but stopped when after 200,000 tons had been loaded. The vessel is to be pulled out of service for repairs. The Vale Beijing just started service on September 27, 2011 as the largest ore carrier afloat. The Vale Beijing, classified as Valemax, is nearly twice the size of a typical capsize vessel that carries iron ore from Brazil to China. One report states the cause of the hull cracks may be the result of poor quality in the construction of the vessel. Reports state if the vessel would sink, it could delay further shipments of iron ore from the port. No reports of injuries.
Video of the Vale Beijing being towed to an anchorage.
How big is this vessel?
Height: 22 story building
Width: A soccer field
Length: nearly more than 37 meters longer than the Eiffel Tower‘s height (324 meters)
Capacity: Roughly the capacity of a combined load of 11,150 trucks