The shipping industry is seeing a spike in lost containers as they continue to fall off ships before reaching their destination. In 2020, more than 3000 containers fell overboard. So far, 1,000 containers have been lost in 2021.
The increase in lost containers ultimately stems from a heightened pressure on the shipping industry. In recent years there has been an increase in consumer demand, as more people are ordering products online. Resultantly, there has been an increased urgency to deliver more products even quicker than ever.
In order to meet demand, shipping containers are being stacked higher than ever. The higher containers are ultimately less stable and more prone to fall. Treacherous and unpredictable weather also plays a role. In an attempt to save on time and fuel, cargo ships sometimes brave storm like conditions instead of rerouting. Resultantly, high-speed winds and giant waves are causing the already unstable containers to fall.
Increased risk of injury
The industry trend to stack higher is not only bad for business but dangerous for the crew. While there is no evidence that it has led to increased injuries, the increased risk posed by the unstable containers is apparent. The toppling of these 40-foot containers is so terrifying that post-traumatic stress disorder is prevalent amongst workers.
If someone were to get hit, they could suffer severe injury or death. Because these types of injuries happen on or near the water, they are governed by maritime law instead of state law. An experienced attorney who understands maritime law will be able to help anyone injured at sea recover lost wages, medical bills and more.