Always on the look out for container related trivia, the MoD 2013/14 Annual Report and Accounts provides some interesting information on the numbers of containers that are being used to recover equipment and stores from Afghanistan.
As at the end of October 2014, we had redeployed 3,400 vehicles and major equipments ( VAME) and 4,550 twenty foot equivalent units ( TEUs) of materiel from Afghanistan. This represents 95.2% of the total number of VAME and 71.8% of TEUs to be redeployed.
A quick bit of mental arithmetic (who am I kidding) shows the expected total number of Twenty Foot Equivalent containers used to recover what is left from a decade or so of operations in Afghanistan is;
Or put another way
Just over a third of the capacity of a single Maersk Triple E (later variants) , each of which can carry over 18,000 TEU.
Or the throughput of the Port of Felixstowe for a whole 15 hours (Felixstowe handled 3.7 million TEU’s last year)
Puts things in perspective and makes you think doesn’t it?