Steve's Marine Disaster Pages


The Hanjin Pennyslvania, a 4000 TEU containership, newly built in 2002, is seen above as she looked on 10th November 2002. The very latest design with all the most modern safety equipment.

Unfortunately, on November 11th 2002, the HANJIN PENNYSLVANIA had a fire break out, the cause of which is still not certain. Fire on board a ship is perhaps the most terrifying event for the crew to deal with. However, on a new ship with the latest fire safety equipment, it is not the sort of occurrence that, these days, should be fatal. But the cargo being carried inside some of the containers on board has caused some controversy...........
Some containers on board were packed with fireworks, destined for northern European ports. The explosion on the right appears to have come from No.6 hold, and therefore probably NOT caused by the consignment of fireworks.

What started as a small day-to-day event, resulted in a huge loss for the vessel owner and cargo interests (possibly as much as US$100,000,000 across both the hull and the cargo !) .....not to mention the 2 crew members who died.

Thanks to Fred Burgmeijer, Netherlands (involved in the aftermath of this event) for correcting some facts concerning the explosion described above.

The after-effects of the fire on the containers, now reduced to scrap metal. Why was such dangerous cargo allowed to be stowed so close to the superstructure ???

This is what was left of the bridge after the fire.
Anyone who thinks that metal doesn't burn...
think again....

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