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Maersk ship skips Napier after Covid-19 outbreak

Maersk's 5,905TEU Rio de la Plata will omit its scheduled call at Napier, going on instead to its next destination in Tanjung Pelepas, after a Covid-19 outbreak on board.

The vessel departed Tauranga port on 11 August and is expected to reach Tanjung Pelepas on 21 August.

Maersk Line's subsidiary Hamburg Süd operates the ship, which serves its SENZ 2 service that calls at Singapore, Brisbane and Sydney in Australia, Tauranga, Napier, Lyttelton and Port Chalmers in New Zealand and Tanjung Pelepas in Malaysia.

Rio de la Plata was to have left Tauranga for another New Zealander port, Napier, on 7 August when 11 of its 21 crew members tested positive for Covid-19. The ship was anchored outside Tauranga while authorities decided where to send the ship next.

A Hamburg Süd spokesman told Container News that to keep to its schedule, the boxship will sail to Tanjung Pelepas, because the Covid-19 outbreak precluded its entry to Napier.

The spokesman added, "The customers with cargo on board that could not be discharged in Napier have been informed and will receive an update once Rio de la Plata reaches Tanjung Pelapas in Malaysia and the contingency plan for onboard containers is finalised."

Martina Li
Asia Correspondent

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