Why would the ships getting free be disappointing news, John? That just saved us a bundle of money because we can send our monster ice breaker that was enroute, back home.
And, I just heard on the news that this year's Antarctic Ice Pack was the largest in recorded history. And, the only reason the ships were able to get out was a big shift in the winds, which caused some of the ice to break up and shift.
Anyone that watches the Discover Channel's Deadly Catch on a regular basis knows how easy it is to get caught in the Arctic Ice Pack between Alaska and Russia during the short crabbing season. The ice packs can form in a matter of hours, and depending upon the winds, they can quickly compress and stack, which is something I've seen while in the navy. It was scary to say the least.