Page 1 of 9 123456 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 90
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    UK Kent, or living aboard elsewhere
    Posts
    22

    Default Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Just updating my opinion on this: not a threat as they all sink, and mostly fast. Some might float for a bit if they contain timber or flatscreen TVs with a lot of polystyrene packaging; but they all go down in the end.

    Anyone ever seen one or heard of one?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Isle of Eigg
    Posts
    6,949

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Quote Originally Posted by RolyGate View Post
    Just updating my opinion on this: not a threat as they all sink, and mostly fast. Some might float for a bit if they contain timber or flatscreen TVs with a lot of polystyrene packaging; but they all go down in the end.

    Anyone ever seen one or heard of one?

    Thanks in advance.
    Where do you get your information from?
    These people seem to think otherwise... https://www.billiebox.co.uk/facts-ab...ng-containers/
    3. It’s estimated that there are 1,582 shipping containers lost at sea (includes catastrophic events) every year. That’s almost 4 container every day! Lost containers can be damaged by waves and sink (a 20ft can take up to 57 days and a 40ft will take three times as long, to sink). The ones that don’t sink, often float just below the surface which can cause a lot of damage to other sailing vessels.
    I remember calculating how fast one would sink and was surprised just how long it would take. Its not the air that needs to get out, but the amount of water that needs to get in through some very small holes that takes the time.
    Just call me Dougal, Sir Dougal to you.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    SW Scotland
    Posts
    18,881

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon nan Gruagach View Post
    (Quoting): 3. It’s estimated that there are 1,582 shipping containers lost at sea (includes catastrophic events) every year. That’s almost 4 container every day! Lost containers can be damaged by waves and sink (a 20ft can take up to 57 days and a 40ft will take three times as long, to sink). The ones that don’t sink, often float just below the surface which can cause a lot of damage to other sailing vessels.
    There may not be a contradiction. What proportion of those four per day (that's one for every 35 million square miles, although obviously not evenly spread) takes 57 days to sink?

    And by what physical process can a container "float just below the surface"? Unless they have a certificate of exemption from Archimedes' Law, things which don't float keep on sinking unless they have a bulk modulus (compressibility) which is less than that of the fluid surrounding them. That will not be the case for containers.
    "Seamen are always wanting to do things the proper way; and I like to do them my way."

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    6,779

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Any container packed with impermeable material less dense than water, will float if the buoyancy of the material is greater than the weight of the actual container. I've seen a lot of strange things floating, but so far, not a container, although I have seen one washed up on the shore on the Monachs, and obviously it floated to there. It's quite scary to think of something like that, floating about.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    I saw one off selsey bill a few years ago while out paddle boarding, it appeared to be about a foot or so below the surface. Certainly a hazard to any boat.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Emsworth Hants
    Posts
    12,249

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    I've not any containers but sailing down to Grenada after Hurricane Ivan we had to avoid many large fallen trees.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Isle of Eigg
    Posts
    6,949

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Quote Originally Posted by JumbleDuck View Post
    There may not be a contradiction. What proportion of those four per day (that's one for every 35 million square miles, although obviously not evenly spread) takes 57 days to sink?

    And by what physical process can a container "float just below the surface"? Unless they have a certificate of exemption from Archimedes' Law, things which don't float keep on sinking unless they have a bulk modulus (compressibility) which is less than that of the fluid surrounding them. That will not be the case for containers.
    I would expect many of the floaters to be just below the surface, in fact just under half of them... You (and your buddy Archi) are right for flat calm conditions, but add a few waves and things arent so simple. On rough water what is "the surface" as a point to be above or below, and does the floater need to be completely submerged or just the majority of it submerged to be "below"

    But seriously....
    Of those that do float whilst completely waterlogged, there are few that would offer better than an ice berg.

    And back to some thumb in the wind maths...
    40' vs 20', I guess the vast majority are 40' which "can take 3 times as long" so 170 days. Wild, unsubstantiated guess that its an even distribution (of floating times) thats on average 85 days so expect 1 container every 400,000 square miles.
    https://www.marinetraffic.com/ has 160,000 vessels tracked in the last 24 hours.
    All of a sudden, it looks like there should be collisions with containers quite frequently.
    Obviously the chances of anyone on this forum being that unlucky is remote.....
    Just call me Dougal, Sir Dougal to you.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Lorient, just back from a second round Atlantic trip
    Posts
    3,486

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Current (well, a couple of days old) Nav Warnings about sunken ship "Grande America" in Biscay, a number of containers still floating after a few days.
    Screenshot_2019-03-14-12-01-19.png.
    There is also the rescue boat floating somewhere. The crew were rescued by HMS Argyll, they should have taken a moment to shell all those floating debris

    Today's nav warnings give one more container position.
    oh no, yet another sailing blog
    http://sybrancaleone.blogspot.com/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    2,418

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Quote Originally Posted by RolyGate View Post
    Just updating my opinion on this: not a threat as they all sink, and mostly fast. Some might float for a bit if they contain timber or flatscreen TVs with a lot of polystyrene packaging; but they all go down in the end.

    Anyone ever seen one or heard of one?

    Thanks in advance.
    I was always of the opinion that floating containers were a bit of a myth after an MAIB investigator told me he'd never seen a verifiable account of it happening.

    Since then I've seen a photo of one, and one of the furled sails podcasts had a flotsam expert who convincingly argued that containers full of electronics packed with polystyrene float.

    So I'm now convinced they exist.

    Having said that you don't often see them washed up on beaches around the Uk, so maybe not *that* common.

    EDIT: I *think* this is the right episode: http://furledsails.com/article.php3?article=695
    Last edited by Mark-1; 19-03-19 at 09:04.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    5,278

    Default Re: Floating containers - ever seen one?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lon nan Gruagach View Post
    I would expect many of the floaters to be just below the surface, in fact just under half of them... You (and your buddy Archi) are right for flat calm conditions, but add a few waves and things arent so simple. On rough water what is "the surface" as a point to be above or below, and does the floater need to be completely submerged or just the majority of it submerged to be "below"
    Are you sure about that, for it's not immediately intuitive, at least to me!

Page 1 of 9 123456 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Latest YBW News

Find Boats For Sale

to
to