Beggaring Belief

A 50,000 ton Norwegian vehicle freighter, the Tricolor, sank in the English Channel on December 14th, ruining many a Belgian car dealers’ Christmas; it was carrying 2,862 BMW, Saab and Volvo autos with an estimated $50 million dollars. It sank in about 82 feet of water, and is resting comfortably on its side.

Hourly radio broadcasts alert ships transiting the waters to her location, and a marker buoy was placed at this hazard to navigation so no other ships would be endangered by it. Since then it has been hit twice, making a grand total of three ships that have struck it within the month (it originally sank after coming together with a container ship). Fortunately, no deaths or environmental disasters have ensued from this astonishing display of shiphandling by professional mariners.

The best quote so far has been attributed to ‘maritime union bosses’ who said it “beggard belief” that it was hit a second time.

Ananova has a good picture, and The Times (free registration required) has more detail.