Repairs to the tanker berth at Transnet National Ports Authority’s (TNPA’s) Port Elizabeth port have been successfully completed ahead of schedule.
The berth has been successfully recertified by a structural engineer and has been cleared to resume operations. It had been closed since February 18 to enable repairs to the corroded steel structures supporting the berth’s access walkway.
The contractor managed to ensure that the berth was reopened eight days ahead of schedule, TNPA said in a statement published on Wednesday.
The repair works were awarded to Port Elizabeth-based ship and marine infrastructure repair company Ocean Engineering.
As the works had to be conducted above and below water, the contractor made use of the services of CDC Commercial Diving.
TNPA reported that work had been technically challenging and was affected by weather conditions and ocean tides.
Ocean Engineering’s Louis Botha noted that, "we were constrained to complete the project in a very narrow window; however, with thoughtful planning, as well as creative collaboration with CDC Commercial Diving’s Raymond Taylor, we were able to complete the project early.”
Port manager Rajesh Dana added that TNPA was very pleased with the outcome. He said “the collaborative effort in which the project was executed is highly commendable”.
“TNPA would like to thank the TNPA engineering team, the contractor, the oil companies and the South African Petroleum Industry Association for ensuring that safety of operations . . . was prioritised in allowing the project to be implemented as smoothly as it was.”
Dana concluded that the cooperation also ensured uninterrupted fuel supply to Nelson Mandela Bay during the shutdown.