Even as the Canal moves to increase capacity under its Permanent Modernization Program, it set two records -- for tonnage and transits. On Monday, March 13, a record that has stood for almost two years was broken when 1,070,023 Panama Canal/Universal Measurement System (PC/UMS) tons moved through the Canal. A mix of 46 regular and super vessels made the transit on that day.
The day before, on Sunday, March 12, 27 super ships transited the waterway. Super vessels are those measuring 91 feet or more in beam. The daily average for supers is 19 per day.
The bigger ships have greater restrictions and limits and call for more resources and time to make the transit. The supers that made up the record consisted of nine dry bulk carriers, eight containerships, six tankers, one vehicle carrier and three others.
“We have assigned additional crews to the locks to continue to achieve daily maximum capacity, and have deployed all available tugs, line handling crews and pilots to guarantee the waterway’s reliability,” says Jorge L. Quijano, ACP Maritime Operations Director.