Universal Bizargo: 4 Men Found in Shipping Container
Imagine you’re a port security guard, walking up and down rows of stacked shipping containers when you hear cries for help. You investigate. Getting closer to the sounds, unsure exactly what you’ll find, you start to get nervous.
The source of the cries is hard to establish, and soon you realize the cries for help are probably coming from inside one of the many shipping containers at the port.
One security guard at the Port of Montreal didn’t have to imagine this situation; it happened to him on Thursday (July 20th), according to a story from CBC News.
The security guard was able to locate the correct shipping container not only by the cries for help but also by a makeshift flag its occupants were waiving through a hole they’d drilled through the top of the container. That’s right, occupants of the container.
Four men were found inside the shipping container, which brings us to a new installment of Universal Bizargo, Universal Cargo’s blog series that shares the bizarre stories that come out of international shipping.
In a previous article on the story, CBC shared the account of a trucker who witnessed the stowaways being rescued from the container:
Andrei Medvedev, a truck driver who was going to pick a different container at the port, saw the slew of emergency vehicles, including paramedics and border police.
“I was kind of curious, kept looking and saw they were parked next to one of the 40-foot containers,” he said. “I saw paramedics coming out of this container with a stretcher with [someone on it].”
According to the first CBC article mentioned above, the security guard who initially found the men was only able to do so because of a customs technicality. The shipping container the men were found in was set aside for inspection because it contained a vehicle.
When the security guard opened the door of the shipping container that had arrived over 24 hours earlier on an OOCL ship, the four men inside “were in poor condition and had to be taken to hospital,” according to CBC New. “They were suffering from dehydration and heat stroke.”
The men are refugees from Georgia, but apparently a publication ban from the refugee board hearing that ensued after the men’s discovery has made it impossible for CBC to report the identity of the men or why exactly they risked their lives in a shipping container to travel from Georgia to Canada.
This is not the first time we’ve shared the story of someone being found in a shipping container with our readers. In fact, the very first Universal Bizargo blog, posted way back in 2013, was about a hungover man who woke up to find himself in a sealed shipping container.
Even before that, we shared the story of a cute little kitten stowaway that was found in a shipping container that traveled all the way from China to the United States. Unfortunately, the original blog seems to have been lost, but a quick summary is given in a 2015 post that counted down our then 10 most entertaining shipping blogs.
Despite a few occurrences, it is still pretty bizarre when a shipping container is opened at a port and someone is discovered inside.