APL rolls out Ocean Capable 53-foot Ocean53 Containers for Sea Trade

by OldSailor on November 14, 2007


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The standard containers used in sea lanes are:

20 foot standard container (l x w x h) in inches:234″ x 92″ x 96″

40 foot standard container (l x w x h) in inches:474″ x 92″ x 96″

Whereas, the 53-foot containers are widely used in domestic intermodal transportation in the U.S. Presently importers, ship cargo to the U.S. West Coast in 20, 40 -foot boxes, then trans-load – or transfer – their shipments to 53-foot containers at U.S. ports for truck or rail transport to the final destination.

Now, APL has introduced a new 53 foot ocean-capable container named Ocean53, for sea trade forcing shippers to line up for ‘big-box economics’. According to APL, 53-foot containers could become the transport method of choice for customers moving cargo directly to inland U.S. destinations.

  • The Ocean53 containers are seen as a global trade breakthrough. Ocean53 containers are longer and wider than containers currently employed in sea trade lanes. Ocean53s are built to withstand the rough seas, unlike 53-foot boxes already in use for U.S. domestic-oriented truck, rail and barge transport.
  • The Ocean53 boxes have 60% more capacity than standard 40-foot containers. They’re 9 feet 6 inches high and 102 inches wide – six inches wider than standard boxes. That extra space enables shippers to consolidate more cargo into fewer containers.This will lead to:
    • Reduced container expense
    • Reduced container handling resulting in less congestion at ports and on railways and highways
    • Improved transit times as shippers eliminate the need to transfer cargo from smaller ocean containers into 53-foot boxes at U.S. distribution centers.
  • The first Ocean53, ocean-capable containers from APL have rolled off the assembly line and were loaded onto the vessel APL Philippines on 12 November, at the Port of Chiwan for their initial voyage across the Pacific.
  • Cargo loaded Ocean53s are expected to arrive late next week at APL’s Global Gateway South marine terminal in the Port of Los Angeles.
  • Ocean53 will ultimately improve cargo handling efficiency, reduce congestion on land and save money for customers.

About APL
APL is a global container shipping business offering more than 60 weekly services and nearly 300 calls at more than 90 ports in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas. It combines world-class intermodal operations with leading-edge IT and e-commerce. APL is a unit of Singapore-based Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), a global shipping and logistics company.


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