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Shipping losses lowest for a decade

Shipping losses continued their downward trend in 2014 with the total number for the year the lowest for a decade.


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There were 75 losses between January 1 and December 31 last year, according to the third annual AGCS Safety and Shipping Review 2015, which analyzes reported shipping losses of over 100 gross tons.

This compares favorably with 2013 when there were 110 reported losses, meaning that total losses are down by 32% year-on-year. The 2014 accident year also represents a significant improvement on the 10-year loss average (2005-2014 period) which totals 127. (2014 total losses down on 10-year average by 41%). In total shipping losses have declined by almost 50% around the world since 2005 when they totaled 149 (see table below).

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More than a third of 2014’s total losses were concentrated in two maritime regions. As in 2013, South China, Indo China, Indonesia and the Philippines was the maritime region with the most losses (17), closely followed by Japan, Korea and North China (12). No other maritime region had double-digit losses for the year.

The most common cause of losses over the past year was foundering (sinking or submerging) (49), accounting for 65% of all losses. Wrecked/stranded (13) was the second top cause of loss. Meanwhile, there was a significant reduction in the number of fire/explosion incidents resulting in total losses. There were just 4 during 2014, down 73% year-on-year.

A third of the vessels that were losses were cargo ships (25) with fishery (14) the only other type of vessel to record double-digit losses. Together, these two types of vessels accounted for over 50% of all losses.


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