Lessons from the Cougar Ace

Image of Cougar Ace Listing on 24 July 2006Image via Wikipedia

Lately, Wired Magazine has become one of my must read subscriptions when I’m on the road, but not just for the technology coverage. Every once in a while they have pieces like the recent one (link) on the fate of the Cougar Ace, a cargo ship that ran into odd circumstances while transporting a boat-load of Mazdas. Wired’s article covered the tragic race to save the Cougar Ace from the seas. I’ve linked to the article above, it’s a must read. Well, yesterday’s Wall Street Journal had a followup article on the process that Mazda had to design to ‘decommission’ the brand new cars that were on the Cougar Ace. After the cargo ship was righted, Mazda had to decide what to do with the 4,000 odd, brand new cars, that had almost sunk in the disaster. Despite receiving requests from every imaginable corner to save the cars (or sell them), Mazda decided the best option was to destroy them all. The Journal article details that destruction process and the lessons that Mazda learned in creating an assembly line like process to take the cars apart. It’s worth reading both articles to get an understanding what happens when things go wrong on the high seas.