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Drone Attack on OOCL Box Ship

Now, it seems we have a new threat to worry about; drone attacks. It has been reported that a Houthi drone attacked an OOCL ship sailing in the Red Sea region, increasing the risks to container vessels passing through the area.

An OOCL ship was attacked by a Houthi drone on 3 December.

The incident occurred when the 4,250 teu Number 9 was hit by a rocket while sailing near the Yemen coast, causing engine damage and water intake.

The vessel issued a distress call and was ordered to dock at the port of Hodeidah by the Houthi rebels, who are currently holding the captured car-carrier Galaxy Leader. However, the captain of Number 9 explained that the damaged engine prevented him from altering course.

The 4,250 teu Number 9 was hit by a rocket while sailing near the Yemen coast

The vessel is part of the Ocean Alliance’s AAS Asia-Mediterranean service and is still on its original schedule of transiting the Suez Canal followed by a call at Alexandria, albeit a day late.

Following the attack, maritime newspaper Tradewinds raised the possibility that the Houthi rebels might be using outdated data to target shipping assets.

Notably, the Number 9 was chartered by Israeli line Zim from October 2020 to December 2020, but the ship was later chartered by Hong Kong-based Gold Star Line for a three-year fixture starting October 2021 and has been operated by Cosco-owned OOCL this year.

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