Where Ships Go to Die, Workers Risk Everything


In Bangladesh, men desperate for work perform one of the world’s most dangerous jobs. They demolish huge ships in grueling conditions, braving disease, pollution, and the threat of being crushed or stabbed by steel sliced from the hulls.

About Chittagong Ship Breaking Yard

Chittagong Ship Breaking Yard is located in Faujdarhat, Sitakunda Upazila, Bangladesh along the 18 kilometers (11 mi) Sitakunda coastal strip, 20 kilometers (12 mi) north-west of Chittagong. It is the world’s largest ship breaking industry, employs over 200,000 Bangladeshis and accounts for around a fifth of all the steel in Bangladesh.

History of Chittagong Ship Breaking Yard 

In 1960, after a severe cyclone, the Greek ship M D Alpine was stranded on the shores of Sitakunda, Chittagong. It could not be re-floated and so remained there for several years. In 1965, Chittagong Steel House bought the ship and had it scrapped. It took years to scrap the vessel, but the work gave birth to the industry in Bangladesh.

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