Presentation on theme: "The Panama Canal Greatest Shortcut on Earth!. Why Build a Canal? A trip from San Francisco to New York is 7,872 miles shorter using the canal instead."— Presentation transcript:
Tropical diseases, such as yellow fever and malaria are spread easily by mosquitoes.
1880s In 1881, the French were given permission to build a canal across Panama. They do not know how to contend with the diseases found in Panama.
After eight years and over 20,000 French construction worker deaths, the French abandon the project. The company building the canal goes bankrupt.
The United States begins work on the canal in 1904. It is a project of the U.S. government so unlike the French, they did not run out of money. William Gorgas discovered (1898 – after the Sp.Am War) that mosquitoes cause the diseases - defeat them and you end disease!
In 1903, Panama was a province of Columbia (kind of like Delaware is part of the United States) The United States offers to buy rights to build the canal from Columbia for $10 million dollars and $250,000 per year.
Columbia refuses – holding out for more money… On November 3, 1903 Panamanians, led by officials of the Panama Railroad and others hoping to gain from the construction of a canal, launched a revolution.
The United States sends warships to protect Panama and prevent Colombia from retaking it’s own territory.
The rebels are quickly victorious and on November 6, 1903 President Theodore Roosevelt officially recognizes the new nation of Panama who in turn signs the treaty previously refused by Colombia.
Another major decision had to be made – should the canal be sea level – like the French had tried to build or should they follow the natural rise of the land?
What are locks? A lock is a part of a canal with gates at each end where boats are raised or lowered to different water levels.
Go to Canal.asf video to See How a Lock WorksGo to Canal.asf video to See How a Lock Works
In 1906 President Theodore Roosevelt visits the canal zone. Don’t you always wear white to a MUDDY construction site?
Construction progresses using steam shovels and human muscle By 1914, the canal is completed – ahead of schedule and under budget!
More than 922,000 vessels have used the waterway since its opening on August 15, 1914.
1977 The United States signed a treaty with Panama that agreed to give Panama control of the canal in 1999
A vessel passing through the Panama Canal pays a toll proportionate to its size. The average toll is about $45,000
The lowest toll ever paid is 36 cents, paid by Richard Halliburton for swimming the Canal in 1928. On May 30th, 2006, the Maersk Dellys established a new toll record by paying $249,165.00!!
On average, a vessel will take between 8 to 10 hours to transit.
Although longer than 3 Statues of Liberty laid end to end, the current locks are too small. Many ships, known as “Pana-Max”, barely fit through…
Due to be completed between 2014 and 2015, Work is under way to modernize the canal and enable it to handle much larger ships. At a cost of over $5 Billion, work includes deepening and widening the canal along with adding newer and larger locks.