Panama Canal Transits Four LNG Vessels in One Day

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On October 1, Panama Canal reached a new milestone after the successful transit of four Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) ships with beams of up to 160 feet (49 meters) in a single day through the Neopanamax Locks.

New Record

By setting this new milestone, the Panama Canal broke its old record set on April 17, 2018, when three LNG vessels transited through the waterway on the same day. However, the transition of four LNG vessels through the Panama Canal in one day marks a first for the waterway.

LNG vessels

The vessels ‘Ribera del Duero Knutsen’ with a cargo capacity of 173,000 m3 and ‘Maran Gas Pericles’ with cargo capacity of 174,000 m3 transited northbound, while vessels ‘Torben Spirit’ with a cargo capacity of 174,000 m3 and ‘Oceanic Breeze’ with a cargo capacity of 155,300 m3 transited southbound, facilitating international trade between customers in South Korea, Japan, Chile, and the US Gulf Coast.

Transit Reservation System

The Panama Canal has introduced changes to its Transit Reservation System to offer two slots per day to LNG vessels as a result of experience acquired with the transit of more than 4,200 Neopanamax vessels. These modifications have allowed optimizing the Expanded Canal’s capacity, in order to meet specific demands such as the transit of four LNG vessels in a single day.

Panama Canal Administrator Jorge L. Quijano said, “The transit of these four LNG ships in just one day demonstrates the Panama Canal’s commitment to maximizing the efficiency, flexibility, and reliability of its service to all customers”.

With these modifications effective from October 1, 2018, the Panama Canal reinforces its capacity to handle the growing LNG transit demand coming from the United States once the different export terminals begin operation.

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Source: Panama Canal

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