Chesapeake Bay

Tugboats Try to Pull Stuck ‘Ever Forward' Ship Out of Mud

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Five tugboats pushed and pulled a cargo ship stuck in the mud of the Chesapeake Bay for hours Tuesday without success. 

The huge ship called the Ever Forward ran ground March 13 and has been stuck since then, for more than two weeks. 

Curious onlookers watched from the shore in Downs Park, just a few hundred yards from the ship, as crews worked on Tuesday. 

The 1,085-foot ship was headed from Baltimore’s harbor when the ship missed a turn in the shipping channel just north of Annapolis and the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, and ran aground. There were no reports of injuries, damage or pollution, the Coast Guard said. 

The Ever Forward needs about 42 feet of water to float but only has about 24 feet. Its entire hull rests on the bottom of the bay. 

Tuesday marked the first attempt to drag the ship out of the mud, after more than a week of dredging. 


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“They’ve been trying to twist her into the channel, and they just haven’t been able to get her to budge,” said  Salvatore Mercogliano, a professor of maritime history at Campbell University.

The shipping channel has been closed, which has caused multiple cargo ships to have to drop anchor and possibly wait until Wednesday for the channel to reopen to commercial traffic. 

Wind out of the north worked against crews’ efforts Tuesday. If they’re unsuccessful for the remainder of the day, the plan is to try again Sunday. 

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