Friday, August 5, 2011

Express Logistics Group Ships A Cultural Icon

Extraordinary Cargo Even for FedEx
Shipping News Feature

CHILE – US – CANADA - GERMANY – Every freight forwarder with a few years under their belt knows that just occasionally one is asked to arrange the transport of a special item very precious to someone. It may be a work of art, an important scientific instrument or even an organ for transplant. Rarer than all these however is a consignment which is literally a cultural icon, and currently logistics group FedEx are involved in a project to transport just such a shipment.

At fourteen feet long and just two feet in diameter the Fénix (Phoenix) capsule looks innocuous compared to some of the exotic items FedEx has had cause to ship recently. 25,000 live sea turtle eggs from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic coast in Florida, a Danish windmill, a five ton satellite all look much more interesting at first glance than a long metal tube resembling part of an air conditioning duct.

The Fénix capsule however, which has been taken on a global tour of Canada and Germany and currently resting for extended display at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., symbolises something which nobody who witnessed it will ever forget, the historic rescue of 33 Chilean miners trapped 2,300 feet underground for nearly ten weeks one year ago at the San Jose Mine near Copiapó, Chile.

The Chilean Copper Corporation (CODELCO) and the Ministry of Mining for the Republic of Chile selected FedEx Express the world’s largest express transportation company, as the official carrier of the capsule on its whistle stop world tour and its delivery to the Smithsonian’s exhibition, “Against All Odds” which opened to the public today and will run for an unspecified period. Arturo Fermandois, the Chilean ambassador to the United States commented:

“The rescue of the miners through the use of the Fénix capsule brought tremendous relief to the Chilean people. It wasn’t just miners from around the world who showed solidarity with those trapped—people from every nation expressed their sympathy and concern for the miners and their families.”

Shipping a global icon means taking special precautions and staff from the FedEx Packaging Lab designed a customized shipping container to transport the 800 lb. capsule and Juan Cento, president, Latin America and Caribbean division, FedEx Express spoke of how proud the company were to freight such an important contemporary yet historic piece, saying:

“FedEx has had the honour of transporting some of the world's most precious cargo and now we have been entrusted with transporting the Fénix capsule. We understand how valuable the capsule is to the Chilean people and the rest of the world and are proud to transport this emblem of hope. At FedEx, the Fénix capsule symbolizes the everyday values that we embrace, the importance of teamwork,”