BigLift Shipping moves giant cranes from Japan to the world
BigLift Shipping’s fleet was busy delivering cranes from Japan to a number of locations worldwide for Mitsui E&S Group. In four separate shipments, the company delivered 17 rubber tyre gantry cranes (RTG) and nine ship to shore cranes (STS) built in Oita, Japan.
For a brief period, CY Interocean I and BigLift Baffin were moored at Mitsui’s yard in Oita. HTV CY Interocean I loaded 11 RTG cranes for Porto Bolivar in Ecuador. These 140-ton constructions measured 26.5x27x10 metres. At the same time, BigLift Baffin loaded three STS cranes, width of 30.5 metres and an overall reach of 126 metres, for Mombasa, Kenia.
BigLift going one up for Yilport
A month earlier, however, BigLift Barentsz, loaded four, even larger STS cranes – a particularly noteworthy feat, as this was the first shipment of four to have been transported in one trip by an MC class vessel, BigLift noted in its latest BigNews. This cargo was destined for the Yilport Liscont terminal in Lisbon, Portugal, which is located in the heart of the city along the river Tagus.
These specific STS cranes weigh in at 1,483 metric tons and have outer dimensions of approximately 28x130x63 m as stowed on deck, with the booms pointing 15 degrees upwards. The cranes had to be stowed in a staggered position to create sufficient room for the seafastening which was done by push-pull bars. The resulting total width of the transport was 175 metres.
Loadout and discharge went smoothly and on schedule. Loading the foremost stowed crane involved an additional step, for it had to be positioned directly behind the accommodation of BigLift Barentsz. At that point the deck is already curving inwards towards the forecastle, which means that the crane could not be skidded directly across from the quay to its deck position. Instead, it was skidded on board at the location of the next crane up, jacked up to rotate the bogies and then skidded to its final stowage place.
After a fairly uneventful voyage of 57 days, with two small detours to avoid major swell seas, BigLift Barentsz arrived at Lisbon. The Liscont terminal is located directly behind the Ponte 25 de Abril, which crosses the Tagus near the well-known Sanctuary of Christ the King. This bridge has a vertical clearance of less than 68 meters at any time. Passage was therefore only possible around low tide and with the air draught of the vessel minimised to approximately 66 meters, which was achieved by ballasting down to maximum harbour draught. This operation took place on the morning of Saturday, January 1, 2022.
More to come
BigLift said that together with its partner CY Shipping it will be quite busy in the roll-on/roll-off market in the next few years, which has lately seen improved demand. Its four vessels will be carrying a variety of cargoes related to the port utility industry, on and offshore wind components, large modules for Petrochemical and LNG installations and others.
The combined fleet of deck carriers of BigLift Shipping and Chung Yang Shipping, consists of four heavy transport vessels and is commercially operated by the BigLift Shipping office in Amsterdam.