At about 7 a.m. on Thursday morning, the largest ship to ever visit the U.S. east coast began pulling into the port of Savannah. The COSCO Development made its way from Asia, through the expanded Panama Canal, first making a stop at the Port of Virginia on Monday before heading down to Savannah.
The ship is 1,200 feet long and 158 feet wide – or about four football fields long and as wide as a football field also. The U.S. Navy recently commissioned a new aircraft carrier, the Gerald R. Ford, which is about 100 feet shorter than the COSCO. It carries 13,092 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs). A TEU is basically a standard 20’ shipping container – 20 feet long and 8 feet tall. Earlier this month, the COSCO became the largest vessel to ever move through the Panama Canal, following its completed expansion last summer. It had to enter the channel in Savannah during high tide just to accommodate its size. COSCO announced the port will move more than 5,000 loads – estimated to be a Georgia Ports record for most moves on one vessel. When it passed under the Talmadge Memorial Bride on its way in, the 185 feet of vertical clearance proved to be just enough. “You could almost touch it,” COSCO joked on social media.
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