Costing a total of R72m (US$8m) the cranes, which are scheduled to be fully operational by the end of May, were purchased by Transnet Port Terminals to improve port-rail efficiency at the Pier 1 container terminal and will be used to transfer containers between internal road vehicles and rail wagons. Currently rail wagons are offloaded with reachstackers.
The cranes can straddle three rail lines and train sets simultaneously and travel the full length of the 810 metre facility and will be able to load directly onto special purpose trailers, which are then transported directly to the container stacks.
“These cranes are among the final investments which form part of phase one of Transnet’s Pier 1 container terminal expansion plans. This phase has seen Transnet provide additional capacity of 720,000 teu to the Port of Durban. Phase two is at feasibility stage and aims to convert Salisbury Island to create additional capacity of 800,000 teu’s,” said Michelle Phillips, business unit executive at the Pier 1 container terminal.