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New breed of giant megaships strain U.S. ports

Mar 8 2016

LONG BEACH, Calif. — Spanning the length of four football fields and rising 20 stories, the giant container ship that tied up here is an awe-inspiring sight.


The CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin — yes, the name seems as long as the ship — is one of a new breed. Container ships are growing ever larger, testing not only the limits of naval architecture but the infrastructure of the ports at which they would call.


American ports are scrambling to dredge channels and raise container cranes as they vie to handle these new ships. Shipping line CMA CGM has been sending the Franklin, the pride of its fleet, to various West Coast ports to send the message that the largest of container ships are on the way and that now is the time to invest whatever it takes to accommodate them.

By USA Today | March 7, 2016 | Chris Woodyard
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