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Case Study IX
MSC Carla
Complete Hull Failure in a Lengthened Container Vessel



Vessel Particulars

LOA: 289.5 m

Breadth: 32.21 m

Depth: 23.9 m

Draft: 11.9 m

Gross Tonnage: 55,241

Deadweight: 40,912 tonnes

Container Capacity: 2870 TEU

Design Speed: 23 knots

Builder: Gotaverken OresundVarvet A/S, Lanskrona, Sweden

Year Built: 1972

Lengthened: Hyundai Mipo Dockyard, Mipo, South Korea, 1984

ID No.: 7214624

Class: Lloyds Register

Flag: Panama

Registered Owner: Rationis Enterprises, Inc., Panama

Charterer: Mediterranean Shipping Co., Geneva

Vessel Type: Double hull containership, Triple screw diesel propulsion

Hull Material: High Strength Steel

Arrangement: 12w x 3h above deck, 10w x 8h below, 8 holds

Figure 1. Profile of MSC CARLA


Figure 2. Section of MSC CARLA


Summary of Structural Failure

The hull of MSC CARLA broke apart at the forward end of the new midbody. The bow portion sank after five days. The stern was towed into port.


Figure 3. Location of Midbody and Fracture



MSC CARLA was built in 1972 in Lanskrona, Sweden. She was originally 275.22m LOA. In 1984 she was lengthened by Hyundai Mipo Dockyard to 289.48m, an addition of 14.27m. This was accomplished by splitting the hull between frames 146 and 147, in Cargo Hold 5 the first hold forward of the house and inserting a section 15.06m that included 22 frames and one transverse bulkhead. (The bulwark at the bow was shortened, resulting in the net change of 14.27m.) The additional midbody created a new 40 container hold below deck.

In order to enhance the longitudinal st