St Lawrence shipping affected by deep freeze

Jan 10 2014

The severe weather affecting North America has disrupted shipping along the St Lawrence River.

Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS) advised that due to the extreme cold weather, which settled over the eastern North American continent last weekend, there were heavy delays in shipping operations dating from 4th January, 2014.

The delays were primarily caused by ice build-up between Lanoraie and the Three Rivers in the St Lawrence River.

Three Canadian Coastguard icebreakers have been working 24/7 in the area since, but no ships have been allowed to depart Montreal outbound.

There were five ships docked at Montreal awaiting favourable ice conditions in order to depart and Canadian Coast Guard Ice Operations had advised that shipping may resume for departures at 06.30 hrs local time on 8th January, 2014.

In addition, there were 12 ships at Three Rivers and Quebec awaiting favourable ice conditions in order to transit to Montreal, earlier this week.

ISS said that reports confirmed that one tanker had broken her moorings and drifted aground in the Sorel area, but that the vessel was recovered and was alongside in Sorel, awaiting inspections.

Laurentian Pilotage Authority had advised on Tuesday that three ships have been authorised to transit outward and four ships have been authorised to transit in bound.

All other ships had to wait for the arrival of a stronger icebreaker for the Quebec Bridge passage. All tankers were delayed below Quebec.

The severe weather is expected to ease this weekend resulting in a rise in temperatures, US reports said. 

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