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Typhoon Mufia Hits Shanghai and Damages Newbuild at Shipyard

typhoon Mufia
Massive wind installation vessel came lose at the shipyard during the storm (Jan de Hul photo)

Published Sep 16, 2022 3:10 PM by The Maritime Executive

Typhoon Mufia left a path of damage and heavy rains as it made landfall four times in China, including passing over key seaports and one of China’s large shipyards near Shanghai. Belgium’s Jan De Nul Group is reporting that it was advised that its newbuild at the COSCO shipyard has sustained damage from the storm.

The typhoon made its first landfall on the coast near Zhoushan late on Wednesday, September 14, and several hours later its second landfall in Shanghai's Fengxian district. Chinese officials are reporting that it was the strongest tropical storm to ever impact Shanghai. Winds were approximately 95 mph with wave heights reported at 16 feet near Shanghai. The storm also brought nearly eight inches of rain to the region.

Jan De Nul said it has been advised that the eye of the storm passed directly over the COSCO Shipping Shipyard in Nantong in the early hours of Thursday morning. According to the company, the high winds and waves caused their wind turbine installation jack-up vessel, Voltaire, to come loose from its moorings. The 21,500 dwt vessel is currently under construction having been launched in January 2022 and due for delivery during the second half of this year. The massive vessel, which is 555 feet long, will be the largest in the company’s fleet with the capability to operate in waters up to 262 feet in depth and an elevated load of up to 16,000 tonnes. It is designed to support the installation of the largest offshore wind farms.

They are reporting that the vessel safely moored back in the shipyard after breaking loose during the storm. The first sight assessments show limited damage to certain parts of the crane and the helideck. Further assessments are ongoing.

Shanghai officials said they had warned more than 7,400 vessels to take shelter before the storm arrived. Operations in the world’s largest container port were suspended along with all bunkering operations. Flights into and out of the international airport were also suspended.

The storm although weakened has continued north along the Chinese coast. The typhoon made two landfalls on Friday first in the coastal city of Dalian. It later reached Qingdao in Shandong province, reports Xinhua news agency. While it continued to be a strong storm it had been downgraded with the winds having slowed to approximately a top speed of 50 mph.

The Chinese have not released further damage assessments. There are reports of flooding and power outages with services and businesses all along the path of the storm being suspended.