Hurricane Mocha sweeps across Bangladesh! The port of Chittagong has been closed for 60 hours!

Hurricane Mocha hits Bangladesh, Chittagong port shut for 60 hours

BusinessDialogue learned that on Sunday, May 15th, the super cyclone Mocha approached and crossed the country, causing the suspension of operations at the main sea port of Chittagong, Bangladesh for two days.

After the Bangladesh Meteorological Department issued danger signals 8 for Chittagong, 10 for Cox’s Bazar, 8 for Payra Port, and 4 for Mongla Port, the Port Authority announced a shutdown on May 12th.

Due to the cyclonic storm, operations at Mongla Sea Port were also suspended.

On the evening of May 12th, the Chittagong Port Authority sent all ships from its docks to the outer anchorage, while barges were sent to safer locations to avoid collisions.

According to port officials, when the Port Authority announced the shutdown, there were 18 ships at the port docks loading and unloading containers and cargo.

Cranes and other equipment were packed and moved to safer locations to prevent accidents from the super cyclone’s winds of over 200 kilometers per hour hitting the Bangladesh coast.

Activity at the port yard was also suspended on Friday night, resulting in an immediate halt to the delivery of containers and cargo.

After the cyclone Mocha left the Myanmar coast, the Metropolitan Office withdrew the danger signals for Bangladesh’s sea and river ports on the evening of May 14th. The cyclone caused severe damage to houses and facilities on Cox’s Bazar and Saint Martin’s Island.

The Chittagong Port Authority subsequently announced the resumption of yard operations and immediately began transporting containers and cargo.

However, with the help of the rising tide, 17 ships were brought back from the outer anchorage and container loading and unloading at the docks resumed on the morning of May 15th. Chittagong Port is a tidal port and resumed operations 60 hours after the shutdown.

According to port officials, a ship immediately left the harbor area after announcing a shutdown, leaving some boxes at a designated wharf to avoid a possible two-day delay.

Due to the cyclonic storm, many ships have been unable to reach Bangladesh’s waters for several days, or they have chosen to slow down and stay away from the hurricane.

BusinessDialogue learned that on May 15th, eight container ships were processing boxes at the port wharf, while another four container ships were anchored outside. That day, the container yard at Chittagong Port had 44,018 standard container boxes, with a total storage capacity of 53,518 standard container boxes.

Editor ✎Estella/BusinessDialogue

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