Mysterious Collision! Freighter Ships Battles Great Lakes

A Canadian cargo vessel encountered an unidentified object while traversing Lake Superior, resulting in water ingress, yet managed to safely reach Ontario despite the incident. The Michipicoten, spanning 689 feet, collided with the object approximately 35 miles southwest of Isle Royale, within American waters, during the early hours of Saturday morning.

Following the collision, the Coast Guard and a National Park Service boat promptly responded to the situation, aiding in the evacuation of eleven crew members out of the total 22 on board the Michipicoten. Additional support from the freighter Edwin H. Gott and a Border Patrol boat was mobilized to assist the distressed vessel.

Initial reports indicated a significant 15-degree list, but thanks to effective pump operation, the flooding was mitigated, reducing the list to five degrees, as reported by the Star-Tribune. Miraculously, no injuries were sustained among the crew throughout the ordeal.

The cargo carried by the Michipicoten consisted of taconite, a type of low-grade iron ore, destined from Two Harbors, Minnesota, to Thunder Bay, Ontario. Thankfully, no spillage of the taconite occurred during the collision or subsequent flooding, safeguarding against environmental contamination.

Lieutenant Joseph Snyder, a spokesperson for the Coast Guard, commended the preparedness of the response teams, stating, “The Coast Guard was definitely prepared to respond to any worst-case scenario: capsize or sink.” He further emphasized the collaborative effort between Transport Canada and the U.S. Coast Guard in conducting a thorough investigation into the incident due to its occurrence within U.S. waters involving a Canadian-flagged vessel.

Despite the vessel experiencing flooding, Snyder reassured that neither the crew nor the cargo were directly impacted. He clarified, “The spaces that were being flooded … essentially empty spaces, they were not spaces where the crew lived or worked and they were not areas where the cargo was.”

The collision in Lake Superior, though initially alarming, resulted in a commendable display of coordinated response efforts, ensuring the safety of the crew and the preservation of cargo integrity. Both Canadian and American authorities are committed to investigating the incident further to ascertain its cause and prevent similar occurrences in the future.

Reports explain that the ship was in deep waters… So what the heck did they hit?

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