Two 144 t mobile harbour cranes [MHC], moved from Maydon Wharf, in Durban, to the Richards Bay dry bulk terminal [DBT] have been fully commissioned, Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) said on Thursday.
The move entailed lifting the MHCs with the help of heavy lift gear cranes. This was followed by a sea voyage from Durban to Richards Bay, offloading, commissioning and load testing.
Stringent measures had to be applied to ensure the MHCs were properly secured and corrosion-protected while in transit.
The two cranes have been redeployed to berth 701, which operates as a dual-purpose import and export berth. Up until now, it had been making use of two MHCs and two bridge hoppers for the operation.
Although these cranes would be mainly used at berth 701, their mobility allows the terminals to use the cranes as back-up for the 702, 609 and MPT 6 series berths. The cranes currently run on diesel generator sets and will be upgraded to dual-shore power electric machines to ensure that the bulk operation is cost effective to TPT customers.
TPT engineering GM Josiah Mpofu said the relocation would assist the Richards Bay DBT to improve berth use, allowing for better equipment use and improvement in opportunities to maintain cranes better, increasing their reliability.