CONTAINER ship APL England (IMO 9218650) has reported the loss of 40 containers overboard while sailing off New South Wales over the weekend.

The ship’s master reported the incident to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority on Sunday.

“Just after 6.10am, the Singapore-flagged container ship APL England experienced a temporary loss of propulsion during heavy seas about 73 kilometres south east of Sydney,” AMSA said in a statement.”

Footage from AMSA Challenger’s APL England observation flight

The ship was sailing from China to Australia.

“The ship’s power was restored within a few minutes but during this time the ship reported that it was rolling heavily, causing container stacks to collapse and several containers to fall overboard,” AMSA stated.

As well as the 40 containers lost overboard, another 74 containers are reported to have been damaged.

Six containers are reported to be protruding from the starboard side of the ship and three from the port side of the ship.

AMSA plans on using one of its challenger jets to proceed to look for containers and debris and to inspect the ship for any signs of damage or pollution.


As of 5pm today (25 May) the APL England was approaching Brisbane. Its original destination is understood to have been Melbourne.

“At this stage it is unknown whether there will be any shoreline impacts associated with this incident and AMSA is working with NSW Maritime to monitor the situation and develop an appropriate response,” AMSA stated.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has been notified.

ATSB transport safety investigators are to meet the vessel when it arrives in port to survey damage to the vessel and container stacks, interview the crew and retrieve available recorded data.

A preliminary report is to be released in about one to two months. The incident occurred just days after the completion of salvage work of containers that fell overboard from YM Efficiency, an incident that occurred on a wild night off the NSW Central Coast in mid-2018.

APL England was launched in 2001 and, according to the MarineTraffic website, is 277 metres long, 40 metres wide and has capacity for 5510 TEU.