The Amsterdam Container Terminal is situated on the North Sea Canal in the west of the Netherlands. When the terminal closed in 2013, nine container cranes came up for sale at once. Four of them were sold to a Spanish terminal at the time, after which Wagenborg transported them to their destination. The remaining five container cranes have now also been sold, with two cranes going to Gdynia in Poland and the last three cranes going to Tenerife. Again, Wagenborg is fully in charge of transporting them.
Preparation is half the work
So how do you actually go about transporting container cranes, each weighing 1,500 tonnes and 110 metres in height, by sea? This is a challenge that Wagenborg Towage also successfully met in 2012. The three container cranes destined for Tenerife were towed to their new home port on Wagenborg Barge 11. Wagenborg’s latest pontoon is 122 metres long, 36.6 metres wide and 7.6 metres high.
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The power of SPMTs
“SPMTs” from Wagenborg Nedlift loaded the container cranes one by one off the quay and on to the pontoon. The unique features of these Self-Propelled Modular Trailers make them extremely well suited for complicated heavy transport operations. For example, the wheels can be steered 360˚ and independently of each other. These trailers can be loaded with up to 40 tonnes per axis line and the trailers can be operated remotely. Four SPMTs, each with 16 axis lines, double connected and equipped with specially designed support beams, were placed under the cranes and lifted the container cranes off their rails. Now it was “only” a matter of driving the cranes on board before they could be set down on the pontoon. Once the container cranes had been loaded and made seaworthy, the transport vessel departed to its Spanish destination via the North Sea Canal.
Job well done
After an uneventful 14-day trip, Wagenborg Barge 11 arrived safely in Santa Cruz de Tenerife. The cranes were then unloaded one at a time by working in reverse order to the operation in the Netherlands: remove the fastenings, drive the cranes off the pontoon on to the quay and set them down safely on the rails. Effective collaboration between the various Wagenborg companies meant that one crane was unloaded each day, to the customer’s complete satisfaction. Once all the cranes had been unloaded, the pontoon and the equipment was made ready for the return journey to the Netherlands, where they have since arrived safely.