Monday, October 11, 2010

A Day In The Life Of A Project Freight Shipping Company

Beluga make a Vessel Fly
Shipping News Feature

GERMANY – UKRAINE – In the words of Beluga Shipping, the Bremen based freight project and logistics specialists, they had their latest challenge, a near 1000 tonne port construction barge nicknamed ‘Kurt’ master the art of flying last month. Kurt (shouldn’t that be Courtney) could already dig, pile, vibrate and swim according to Beluga but with their help, and as the photograph shows, Kurt got his first flying lesson above the waters of Brake Harbour when being loaded aboard the heavy lift vessel MV Beluga Stavanger for his trip to Odessa to assist in building the port there.

Even for the extremely powerful two cranes of the multipurpose heavy lift project carrier this was not a simple exercise. It was one of the most interesting capability-tests to date for the on board loading gear of the new P-class ships of the Beluga Shipping fleet. Although both onboard cranes as a tandem can lift without any problems even 1,400 tons, this project was extreme, due to the barge’s 50 metre by 22 metre dimensions the cranes were working almost to their furthest outreach and leverage effect during this load was huge.

To facilitate the exercise some of Kurt´s superstructure had to be removed then, with a one tonne traverse spreader forcing the cables apart and lifting shackles themselves weighing over half a tonne each, the two cranes inched the giant barge clear of the water as the Beluga Stavanger’s ballast water pumps worked overtime to prevent the ship heeling over.

After four hours, and with one of the crane jibs holding half of Kurt’s 814 tonne bulk at around 26 metres distant, the watching crews saw the huge load turn in a huge arc to nestle on the deck of the freighter with the obligatory sighs of relief from ships captain Igor Savin and cargo superintendent Tambek Jakson who, together with the planning engineers from Beluga, had between them masterminded the whole operation, a feat to equal some of those by the company which we have witnessed many times before.