JEFF CAPLAN

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: The ship that didn’t come in

Feb 18, 2022, 4:00 PM | Updated: Mar 1, 2022, 12:43 pm
In this undated photo provided by the Portuguese Navy, smoke billows from the burning Felicity Ace ...
In this undated photo provided by the Portuguese Navy, smoke billows from the burning Felicity Ace car transport ship as seen from the Portuguese Navy NPR Setubal ship southeast of the mid-Atlantic Portuguese Azores Islands. The ship's crew were taken by helicopter to Faial island on the archipelago, about 170 kilometers (100 miles) away on Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022. There were no reported injuries. (Portuguese Air Force via AP)
(Portuguese Air Force via AP)

This is an editorial piece. An editorial, like a news article, is based on fact but also shares opinions. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and are not associated with our newsroom.

SALT LAKE CITY — At this very moment, there are at least a few Utah residents who were trembling with anticipation waiting for that magical moment they take delivery of their new Porsche sportscars.

They waited through the chip shortage and the pandemic delays, and finally their ship has come in.

Or at least it was supposed to come in, on a ship that is now on fire.

The vessel is billowing smoke so badly that the crew has jumped ship. It’s now a ghost vessel on fire in the middle of the Atlantic with 1,100 Porsches on board.

There are also 189 Bentleys on board. And car dealers have to pick up the phone, call the buyers and say “I’ve got some bad news. Your car might be on fire. And it might sink into the ocean.”

A Viking funeral for a car that never met its owner.

Enter hope! The crewless cargo ship is 800 miles off the coast of Portugal and shows no sign of sinking. It’s possible they’ll be able to tow it to port and rescue the cars that might be burned up. Or at the very least will stink like smoke.

And it’s not just the Porsches and Bentley’s. There are also a couple of thousand Volkswagens on board. This 650-foot ship is filled with 4,000 new vehicles.

That’s $400 million worth of metal adrift off the Azores Islands, about 800 miles from Portugal.

Listen to Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News every weekday from 3 to 7 p.m. for more of his “My Minute of News.” And check out the podcast below.

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Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: The ship that didn’t come in