Today we cover 10 of the most amazing facts about shipping containers. By now you might know that the shipping container is one of the most famous inventions that has significantly changed how we deal with goods. It has been used for shipping goods all around the world for decades now.
You might have heard about it, but you probably need to learn more about sea containers and how it works. So, stick around and get to learn more about 10 unknown facts about shipping containers.
Table of Contents
1. Shipping Containers Have Been Moving Cargo for More Than 65 Years
In 1956, the first contemporary shipping container was created. Since then, they have consistently kept and shipped items worldwide. They can move freight by road, rail, and ship, making them adaptable and practical. Additionally, they are built to haul large, heavy loads with ease.
There are numerous sizes and heights of shipping containers. They are appropriate for many uses and applications across many industries and sectors because of the extensive range of sizes and materials available.
You may learn something new and save money by being knowledgeable about your neighborhood’s shipping containers and container sales.
2. Fact – Shipping Containers Last a Very Long Time and Are Strong
An interesting fact about shipping containers is that they can endure up to 30 years if given the proper upkeep. Their lifespan is affected by several elements, such as the nature of the delivered items, the regularity of shipments, and the frequency of repairs.
It is usual for things to deteriorate gradually. Above all, your shipping container can endure for a very long time under the appropriate circumstances. As a matter of fact, sales of shipping containers have seen a dramatic increase in recent years, and they are expected to continue to rank among the most popular methods of moving goods internationally for many years to come.
To beat and slow down the growth of rust in your shipping container, consider using protective enamel paint such as Rustoleum to stop and reverse rust.
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Shipping containers occasionally get lost at sea but usually go only a little far. A full cargo container is likely to spend several days or weeks floating on or just below the water before it finally sinks. The air that was trapped is to blame.
The container will eventually fall to the sea floor as this is released over time. During rescue missions, this might assist safety crews in recovering stolen or lost cargo containers. With up to 10,000 containers lost to the ocean each year, this can eventually aid in lowering environmental harm and sea pollution.
4. Fact – Shipping Containers Are Trackable
Most commercial shipping containers are given a unique tracking number at the start of their journey. This makes it possible for you to follow its progress around the globe. Additionally, you can regularly be updated on the progress of your package as it travels to its destination.
This is communicated to you in real time and is accessible online or on your smart device. As can be seen, with shipping container monitoring, you can stop worrying about where or how your items will arrive.
Another fact about shipping containers is that the shipping container was created by Keith Tantlinger (1919–2011). (Chief engineer at Brown Industries). He made the 30-foot aluminum box in 1949, arguably the first modern storage unit, and could be stacked two high on barges traveling between Seattle and Alaska.
Everyone was intrigued by the idea, but regrettably, no one was willing to invest the funds necessary to make it a reality. Marc Levinson’s The Box is the source.
Since March 1934, Malcolm McLean (1913-2001) has been a well-regarded truck tycoon. McLean requested Tantlinger’s assistance to obtain input on the shipping container concept. There was significant controversy about what size container might be loaded in a ship’s hold to convey the most goods for the least amount of money.
The well-known transportation formula, which originated in the early 20th century, was modified by McLean in the 1950s. The outdated “break bulk” technique of product handling was replaced by the metal cargo container (intermodal container) that is familiar to us today.
Containerization emerged. McClean realized that lowering the cost of carrying products required more than simply a metal box—it also needed a completely different approach to handling freight.
The whole shipping system had to adjust, including ports, ships, storage facilities, cranes, trucks, railroads, and the shippers’ operations. Years ahead of his time, he was. Marc Levinson’s The Box is the source.
The largest shipping port in the world in 2018 was in Shanghai, China. As a matter of fact, 2018 saw the passage of 42 million TEU containers or 20-foot containers. The World Shipping Council is the source.
In 2018, the Port of Felixstowe processed 3.85 million 20-foot equivalent containers. By and large, the bulk of the UK’s containerized traffic and 37% of its container units pass through Felixstowe. Department of Trade in the UK
Remember this important fact about shipping containers. In 2019, the oceans were home to more than 50,000 commerce ships, as the International Chamber of Shipping reported. This is an insane figure.
In 2019, the “OOCL Hong Kong” was noted as the world’s largest cargo ship. The “OOCL Hong Kong,” owned by OOCL, measures 400 meters in length, 58.8 meters wide, and 32.5 meters deep. Indeed, it can hold 21,413 TEU (20 feet equivalent per TEU). In June 2017, the OOCL Hong Kong traveled to Felixstowe.
8. Facts About Shipping Containers — Each Has a Unique Number
One of the most interesting facts about shipping containers is that every single sea container that has ever been made has a unique number. In particular, a three-character code identifying the container’s owner comes first, and the unit number that will follow is typically indicated by the letter U.
The actual 7-digit container comes next, the first 6 of which are specific to each container and the final number of which is a check digit determined by a mathematical procedure. Who thought we’d have to tackle math? Heave!
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One of the major important facts about shipping containers is that China manufactures 97% of all shipping containers made worldwide. There are many reasons why that is the case, but mainly because China typically has lower labor costs than any other country globally. Furthermore, it makes sense to manufacture these containers in the same region as most other products manufactured globally.
Additionally, they have expansive manufacturing facilities that can handle the machinery with overhead cranes and a considerable amount of outdoor storage space for the constructed containers to be kept before shipping.
Other nations also manufacture cargo containers, including the USA, Korea, Taiwan, Italy, the UK, France, Poland, and others, but their output pales in comparison to China’s.
One of the most important facts about shipping containers is that a typical container lengths are 20 feet or 40 feet. Despite being advertised as 20 feet long, the 20-foot units are 19 feet and 10.5 inches long, and the 40-foot units are 40 feet long. Note that the heights can be either 8 ft 6 in. or 9 ft 6 in., and the conventional widths are 8 ft. The Hi cubes are 9 ft 6 in height units.
There are more than 20 million shipping containers in use worldwide as of 2012, and five to six million of them are transported by trucks, railways, and ships. They travel together on about 200 million journeys annually.
According to estimates, 10,000 shipping containers are lost at sea yearly (including accidents). In short, that amounts to nearly 192 containers each day! Singularity Hub as a source. Waves can damage and sink lost containers. The ones that don’t drop frequently float below the water’s surface, which can seriously harm other sailing ships.
Shipping containers have become almost ubiquitous in modern life, with tens of millions being shipped and transported daily. Yet despite the ubiquity that they have today, facts about shipping containers technology still needs to be discovered by most people.
This post was designed to clear up some of those mysteries and offer more context around these ubiquitous but ordinarily anonymous structures.