The extent of repair work needed to fix the Panama Canal could be more than previously thought, after the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) declared that no further construction work would be permitted by GUPC – the consortium overseeing the project – until all repair work has been completed, according to IHS Maritime 360.
The ACP said: “After careful examination of all the other sills in both lock complexes, GUPC stated that in addition to reinforcing the sill that presented the issue, they would also reinforce the first and second sill in the Cocoli Locks and the first three sills in the Atlantic-facing Agua Clara Locks as a preventative measure, though these sills have not presented any issue.”
The ACP concluded: “GUPC verbally indicated that the completion date for the expansion project will remain April, 2016 as planned. However, the ACP is awaiting formal confirmation from GUPC, in the form of a comprehensive report, which should also include the root cause of the detected filtrations.”
Workers at the Panama Canal found a huge crack in the canal recently on the Pacific side, which is now causing uncertainty as to the true finish date for the expansion.