Transport starts for South Africa's longest ever wind blades

Transport starts for South Africa’s longest ever wind blades

Photo: Adriaan Scholtz / Vanguard

Over the coming twelve months, South African roads will see two convoys pass from Coega Port to Noupoort, transporting the country’s longest-ever wind blades. Heavy lift specialist Vanguard engineered the transport solution for the 82.5-metre blades that required a transport rig of 95 metres in length. 

“With 78 sets arriving into Coega Port and each set containing three blades, a nacelle, a generator, a hub and containers, over 550 individual pieces of cargo are required to be transported 500 kilometres to Noupoort,” explained Joost Heystek, Project Manager at Vanguard.

“This project has been months in the planning and it’s great to see all of the preparation and engineering work come to life with the transport phase beginning,” Heystek said.

Storage is essential for wind blades transport

The design of the port layout has been critical in the engineering works. Due to the number of components arriving at the port, including 234 of the longest wind blades to be offloaded in South Africa, it is essential that the cargo is stored to allow for access and manoeuvrability at all times. This will enable the transport operation of two convoys per week, for the next 12 months, to run smoothly, the company said.

Transport starts for South Africa's longest ever wind blades
Photo: Adriaan Scholtz / Vanguard

Extensive engineering works have also been carried out on the 500 km route. Vanguard completed route surveys and swept path analysis to understand the pinch points along the route including street furniture and telecom lines within the towns that the wind blades would need to pass through. As well as bridges that need to be navigated with the highest level of precision and new roads that have been built to allow access for the convoys.

The knowledge and experience within the business have enabled the successful completion of this critical first stage of the project for Vanguard. The project now transitioning into the transportation stage, which will take place over the next 12 months.

Read also: How do you upright a rolled-over barque?

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Author: Adnan Bajic

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Transport starts for South Africa’s longest ever wind blades | Project Cargo Journal