The Suez Canal is an artificial waterway crossing Egypt.
It is 120 miles long and 74 feet deep.
Opened in 1869, the canal links Suez on the Red Sea to Port Said in the Mediterranean Sea.
It allows ships to sail between Asia and Europe without having to go around the Cape of Good Hope in Africa.
This shortcut avoids a 5600 mile detour and cuts the trip by 10 days.
About 50 ships carrying goods take the canal every day.
It’s a vital source of revenue for Egypt, who charges a toll for each ship.
So, it’s a crucial commercial shipping lane?
In March 2021, an accident reminded us just how important this canal is for world trade.
A 440 yard long container ship, about the length of 4 soccer fields, ran aground in the canal, blocking shipping in both directions.
A huge tailback of ships carrying oil, furniture, clothes, masks and even live animals, built up on either side of the canal.
It took 5 days to pull the huge ship out of the sand.
It was quite scary but the goods finally reached their destination and the canal resumed its normal activity.