Matson Containership Leaks Fuel on Way to Alaska Port

The container ship Maunalei. Photo via Matson Inc.

The U.S. Coast Guard and partner agencies, after monitoring lubricant leaking from a container ship transiting to Anchorage, Alaska allowed the ship to enter the port on Aug. 6 despite the spillage.

On the evening of Aug. 4, personnel at the Coast Guard Sector Anchorage Command Center received a notification that the 645-foot container ship Maunalei was leaking lubricant while transiting to the Port of Alaska.

The Maunalei is an Alaska-flagged containership that was built in 2006 and has a carrying capacity of 2,410 TEU and her length overall is 207.4 meters (680.4 feet) and her width is 29.8 meters (97.77 feet).

The vessel, owned by shipping company Matson, Inc., was reportedly discharging a biodegradable and “environmentally acceptable” lubricant at a rate of about six gallons per hour, according to the Coast Guard.

“Given the low toxicity of the lubricant, the strong tidal currents and the slow release rate, threats to the wildlife and resources in the region are anticipated to be minimal,” the USCG explained in a statement.

“The vessel contains perishable cargo and other supplies for distribution throughout Alaska,” USCG Captain of the Port of Anchorage Capt. Leanne Lusk explained. “After coordinating with federal, state and local stakeholders and balancing the risk to the supply chain with the risk to the environment, I have authorized the vessel to continue its transit.”

Following the offload of cargo, Matson employees arranged for the vessel to transit to dry dock in the mainland U.S. for repairs. The vessel left the port on Aug. 8.