More oil tankers shun southern Red Sea after US-led strikes in Yemen


At least six further oil tankers have either diverted their course away from, or paused before entering the southern Red Sea since the weekend, ship tracking data from LSEG and Kpler show.

That takes the total number of shipping disruptions counted by Reuters to at least fifteen in total since the US-led strikes on Houthi positions in Yemen last week.

Finding new and less efficient route

The tankers Torm Innovation, Proteus Harvonne, and Alfios I appeared to have turned away from the Suez Canal and are taking the longer route around Africa’s Cape of Good Hope for voyages to Europe and the United States.

Pacific Julia and STI Topaz are also heading straight for the Cape Route.

People enjoy the water as a container ship crosses the Gulf of Suez towards the Red Sea before entering the Suez Canal, in El Ain El Sokhna in Suez, east of Cairo, Egypt, September 5, 2015 (credit: Amr Abdallah Dalsh/Reuters)

And from the other side of the Suez Canal, the Octa Lune performed a U-turn in the northern part of the Red Sea on Jan. 12 and has returned to the Mediterranean with its Taiwan-bound naphtha cargo.

The tankers tracked by Reuters on Friday to have diverted or paused have either taken the longer Cape route or paused in the Gulf of Aden or the northern Red Sea.