The Infamous Ship Stuck in the Suez Canal Has Been Freed

The Infamous Ship Stuck in the Suez Canal Has Been Freed

The Infamous Ship Stuck in the Suez Canal Has Been Freed

The Ever Given was stuck for six days, and the internet already misses her.

The Ever Given was stuck for six days, and the internet already misses her.

Text: Siena Ballotta Garman

It seems that more and more experiences these days are shared globally – the same pandemic uproots all of our lives, the same changing climate threatens all of our futures, the same internet links much of our activity. Recently, the same ship captured everyone's attention, because we all rely on the same routes for global trade. The Ever Given, one of the world's largest container ships, became lodged in Egypt's Suez Canal on Tuesday, March 23. For economists, this was a cause for panic: 12% of global trade passes through the Suez Canal, where the Ever Given spent nearly a week in the same position, despite valiant attempts to move her. For users of social media, it was great material for memes.

With reference to COVID and other challenges, users made fun of the comical size difference between the massive Ever Given and the people and machinery attempting to free her. It was a tremendous task, and workers attempted it by dredging sand and using tugboats. Yet, the ship stood her ground until Monday, when higher-powered tugboats pulled her free, aided by the changing tides. The full moon, which arrived on Sunday, caused tides to rise, making it easier to move the ship. Even better, it was the first supermoon of the year, meaning that the full moon was at the closest point to earth within its orbit. This celestial blessing, combined with lots of hard work, finally set the ship free.

The Ever Given, stuck in the canal. Kristin Carringer/Maxar

So what now? The Ever Given has sailed on her way, and we've all had a good time with it. Well, the ship's blockage of the canal is estimated to have cost about $60 billion. Many journalists have been quick to note that this blockage reveals the dangers of our reliance on global supply chains. The COVID-19 pandemic had already underscored some of the problems; during the first wave of the pandemic, hospitals waited too long for shipments of protective gear that strained global trade networks to their breaking point. Our global interconnectedness, although often beneficial, also makes us vulnerable to unpredictable circumstances.

Credits: Cover photo courtesy of Suez Canal Authority/Handout via REUTERS

UP NEXT

Nike Sues MSCHF For Lil Nas X 'Satan Shoes'
Lil Nas X can add Nike to his growing list of Twitter trolling victims.