Walvis Bay — The Namibia Ports Authority (Namport) has acquired two modern Liebherr LHM 550 mobile harbour cranes (MHCs) to fully maximize the port's operations.
The N$80 million dollar acquisition brings the total number of MHC cranes of the company to eight. The two cranes will not only reduce the waiting time of vessels, but also the costs borne by importers and exporters.
The cranes arrived on Monday in Walvis Bay and are currently being offloaded at the port. The extended operator tower of the new cranes creates an additional advantage as it enhances safety and improves visibility for the operator.
Namport bought the two cranes from the Austrian based Liebherr Company. "The assembly and commissioning of the cranes is expected to be completed towards the end of February, 2013 and will officially be handed over to Namport," a statement released by the company yesterday stated.
The acquisition of the cranes constitutes an important step in the modernisation of the Port of Walvis Bay. With a remarkable efficiency profile and technical specifications, the LHM 550 is designed for versatile and efficient cargo handling of up to post-panamax-sized vessels.
A maximum lifting capacity of 144 tonnes (depending on winch configuration) and a 54m max radius makes the LHM 550 the right solution for all cargo handling needs i.e. containers, general cargoes, bulk materials or break bulk.
At this stage only 7 cranes by weight limitation are able to operate on berths 1-3. However, the acquisition of the new cranes will enable the terminal to deploy a total of 6 cranes at any given time on berths 1-3 and simultaneously allow effective maintenance rotation, as one crane will either be on standby or on scheduled maintenance.
Vessels calling at the Port of Walvis Bay and berthing at berths 1-3 use the existing Liebherr 500 MHC's resulting in crane productivity levels of 10 to 18 moves per crane hour.