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Sea-Land Defender

Launched in 1979, the first of the D-9 class signaled the large-scale conversion to diesel power as the first newly constructed diesel-powered container ships to fly the US flag. The class becomes D-9J when in 1985 it undergoes jumboization to improve capacity and reduce operating costs. The Sea-Land Patriot is currently deployed in the Transpacific Service.

The M.S. SEALAND ENDURANCE was built in Korea in 1982. The vessel has served in the Pacific trades for Sea-Land since her maiden voyage. The D9J container ship mission is transporting containers to/from the West Coast of the U.S. and Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan. This route was from Long Beach, California to Oakland, California to Tacoma, Washington to Dutch Harbor, Alaska to Tokyo, Japan to Kobe, Japan to Hong Kong to Naha, Japan and then back to Hong Kong and to Kaohsiung, Taiwan and returning to Long Beach. The crew consists of 21 persons. One half of the crew is permanently assigned to the vessel. During their vacation periods, relief crew members fill in so there is a constant turnover. Each crew member works an eight hour day and frequently more. Meals are 0730-0830, 1130-1230 and 1700-1800. Most common recreation is watching videotaped movies. Port time is much reduced from previous eras and the quick turnaround means many in the crew do not even get ashore during our time in port.

President Reagan signed the Export Trading Company Act of 1982 on October 8, 1982. The President spoke at the Sea-Land Service, Inc., in Long Beach Harbor, Long Beach, Calif. The site of the signing ceremony was adjacent to the Sea-Land Explorer, a D-9 vessel container ship and the most modern in the American merchant marine. In his opening remarks, the President referred to Jesse Calhoon, president of the Marine Engineers Beneficial Association, and Capt. Harold Boehm, who was retiring from the merchant marine after 48 years of service.

Export Development Canada [EDC] first ship repair financing transaction was a joint financing arrangement between EDC and Seaspan. This arrangement was developed to meet the needs of U.S.-based Sea-Land Services, whose container ship "Sea-Land Innovator" required emergency drydock repairs in May 1999, valued at over $1.3 million. Seaspan is still reaping the rewards; in the nine months that followed since this first repair, this client (now known as CSX Lines) has provided Seaspan with over $7 million of business. Up to four US-flagged Econships shifted to the Med-Gulf in late July 2000. They joined another US-flagged ship, the Sea-Land Innovator, and up to three Marshall Islands-registered ships, all from the Maersk Sealand fleet. In all, six ships are used in the service.

In July 2000 Maersk Sealand announced an increase in the number of container ships operating in the Mediterranean-Gulf shipment line by making use of the Malta Freeport. The service links the United States and Gulf coasts with the Mediterranean. The ships provide an important capacity for US military and cargo-preference shipments such as food aid. US military shipments move regularly to ports in southern Europe, such as war-torn Yugoslavia, and aid cargoes have moved regularly to countries in the Black Sea which have suffered from natural disasters. US law dictates that government-owned or financed cargo shipped internationally must move on US-flagged vessels. Such cargo command premium rates. Up to four US-flag Econships shifted to the Med-Gulf in late July 2000. They joined another US-flag ship, the Sea-Land Innovator, and up to three Marshall Islands-registered ships, all from the Maersk Sealand fleet. In all, six ships were used in the service. Maersk Sealand announced that it would pull three U.S.-flag Econships from the Trans-Atlantic trade and install them on its Med-Gulf Express Service. The ships include the SEA-LAND INNOVATOR, SEA-LAND QUALITY and the SEA-LAND INTEGRITY. U.S. Ship Management, Inc. managed the vessels since Maersk acquired Sea-Land's international liner operations. USSM, a US citizen corporation, time charters the vessels to Maersk. The presence of US-flag vessels on the route is important because they gave Maersk Sealand access to valuable US military and aid shipments. Cargo-preference laws require such shipments to move on US-flag vessels.

VESSEL OWNER Sealand Service, Inc.
Gross Tonnage32,600
LOA846 feet
BEAM 106 feet
DRAFT 36 feet
SERVICE SPEED22 Knots 21 Knots

NameFormer NameBuilderLaunchedDecom
Sea-Land Defender Japan 1980-
Sea-Land Developer Japan 1980-
Sea-Land Endurance Korea 1981-
Sea-Land Explorer Japan 1980-
Sea-Land Express Japan 1980-
Sea-Land Freedom-
Sea-Land Independence Japan 1980-
Sea-Land Innovator Korea 1980-
Sea-Land Liberator Japan 1980-
Sea-Land Mariner-
Sea-Land Patriot Japan 1980-
Sea-Land Voyager Japan 1980-

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