The loss of the container ship MOL Comfort which broke in half in the Indian Ocean one year ago continues to generate an immense legal wrangle. Cargo interests have now been given leave by a Japanese court to join Mitsui OSK Lines in its lawsuit against Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, the vessel’s builder for damages from the sinking in which all 4,372 containers onboard the vessel were lost. MOL is also reported to be seeking at least ¥13.8bn ($131.6m) from Mitsubishi for damages and costs related to the cost of strengthening sister-ships with much hanging on ClassNK’s investigation report which is due to be released in August.
For its part, classification society DNV GL has disclosed that it previously rejected designs similar to that of MOL Comfort ”for not meeting the organization’s classification requirements”. Responding to the implied criticism, CLASSNK Executive vice-president Yasushi Nakamura commented whilst in London this week that his classification society “will revise standards for the structural stability of post-panamax containerships if investigations into the MOL Comfort casualty demonstrate the need to do so”.