On 13 April, Maersk Durban had its first trial call at the Port of Iskenderun in Turkey – the first time a Maersk vessel has called at the port since a fire broke out in the wake of the earthquake that unfortunately hit parts of Turkey and Syria in February.
The logistics company said: “We expect to have regular weekly calls with mobile cranes and limited productivity at first, and we will evaluate the continuation of services based on the outcome of trials.
“While acceptance to and from Iskenderun remains closed for now, this will be re-evaluated after trials in May.”
The port has not been operating fully since 7 February, when the earthquake caused containers to topple and catch fire. The blaze was later extinguished with the help of military aircraft.
Because of this, carriers have been forced to divert vessels to other nearby ports. In the case of Maersk, the majority of cargo expected to go through Iskenderun has been diverted to the Port of Mersin – also in Turkey.
However, this has lead to delays and Maersk has now stopped the acceptance of spot bookings to or from the Port of Mersin until further notice and is ‘assessing diversion options at the Port of Izmir’.