Connecting the Pacific Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean was on cards even before Panama. This Panama Canal is an 82 km waterway connecting oceans and cutting the Panama Isthmus. Firstly, it was constructed to trade with international countries as the USA felt alone. It helped the ships for cheaper transport and goods transfer to both continents.
Secondly, the military importance was improved by this canal construction. Theodore Roosevelt wished to construct a canal that could act as a naval base. After that, the canal was handed over to the United States which is now used as a military purpose.
Moreover, the canal opened the connection between Eastern and Western countries which encouraged future relations.
Things To Know About Panama Canal
Many countries like Spain and France tried to construct the canal as this would open up their opportunity to acquire Venezuala. But the United States somehow made it clear that it was theirs and finally constructed in the earlier 19th century.
After 1999, the United States migrated the control to Panama after regular tensions. Following are the facts about the Panama Canal you should know.
1. Original Idea Of Canal
American wanted to construct a canal but not in Panama. They planned for a proposal in Nicaragua as it would help them in commercial as well as military reasons. But other nations like France claimed that it was dangerous to construct in Nicaragua as there were many active volcanoes.
After Panama’s independence in 1902, John Hay proposed a treaty to allow the US to construct the canal. But even after a century, any navigation through Nicaragua is impossible. That is to say, the Chinese got struck with 40 Billion USD for getting rights to construct such a canal.
2. More Death During Construction
Since the project was long, the workers were made to construct in all possible weather conditions. Therefore, it is estimated that more than 25,000 people died during the construction of this canal. It is reported that the most common symptoms were Malaria and yellow fever.
Moreover, the medical industry claimed that these health conditions occur due to dirty air conditions. So, the workers had been prone to poor air and mosquito biting that led them to end their life.
3. Thousands Of Ships Through Panama Canal
Many countries use this canal as an important pathway to transfer goods. Firstly, the United States tops the list followed by China and Chile. However, the ships need to pay the toll of USD 450,000 to cross the canal.
That is to say, in an average year, around 13,000 to 14,000 ships cross this canal. The average time takes to cross this canal ranges from eight to ten hours.
4. Construction Idea Of Panama Canal Dates Back To 16th Century
Though the US constructed the idea of Panama Canal construction in the early 19th century, the talks were from the 16th century. Vasco Nunez de Balboa was a Spanish explorer who first found this thin strait connects the two greatest oceans. After that, Charles V of Rome started surveying the area which was followed by others.
In conclusion, the canal acts as a great connection for the United States and other countries to trade business.