Port receives largest vessel yet

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The Port of Virginia received its largest vessel to date on Monday. Officials are hoping that the its years of renovations have set it up to take advantage of the influx of large vessels expected when the Panama Canal expansion is completed in 2015.

The MSC Tomoko, a ship operated by Mediterranean Shipping Co., is 17 containers wide and can hold an estimated 8,400 TEUs, or 20-foot equivalent containers.

The port has reconfigured its terminals, added new cranes and berths and improved technology that allow it to handle ships of MSC Tomoko’s size. East Coast ports are expected to receive a boon in container traffic when the expansion of the Panama Canal is complete. Currently, the MSC Tomoko is too wide to travel through the canal.

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