Skip to content

Fire on the Yantian Express

At the Promo Addict we live and breathe our core values. Second to none is our value of never miss a deadline. In our 4 years history, we can proudly say that we have never missed a deadline given to us by one of our customers. Between snow storms, blizzards, rain storms, train crashes, mail strikes and other force majeur, I am a little surprised. This was all true until January of this year. The deadline we missed was self imposed, but it was a deadline nonetheless…. Let’s go back to fall of last year. One of our clients; Formations Wood wanted to do an advertising campaign for their customers offering “Free Wood” for people who come into the showroom. I bet they get asked for that a lot. So they decided to offer very cute little branded boxes of tooth picks in their office with the messaging “Free Wood” on the packaging.

The lead time on custom boxes of tooth picks is about 3 months and the minimums are quite high. We decided to buy the toothpicks from one of our trusted suppliers called Admatch. They specialize in matches, but they make a darn good tooth pick as well. The order was placed and the art was approved in October, with an ETA of January. The day before these toothpicks were supposed to land we got a very unexpected email from our supplier. Everyone is OK, nobody has been injured or killed (thank goodness), but the container ship carrying your tooth picks is currently on fire 1900KM off the coast of Canada…………………………………………………………… if you don’t believe me, just google the Yantian Express or click here. We also got some pretty interesting photographs of the ship fire courtesy of

 We still don’t know the cause of the fire, but sadly our toothpicks were lost in the blaze. Luckily for us we have very understanding clients at Formations that have agreed to put their “Free Wood” program on hold until we can safely deliver new toothpicks to them. We would like to commend Admatch for putting the safety of the crew on board the ship first above all else and with clearly communicating information as they received it during this incident. Admatch has also endeavoured to replace the toothpicks as soon as possible following the Lunar New Year shut down that happens in China at this time.