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Update: Salvage operations at Port Elizabeth harbour enter Phase 2

Nov 1, 2018
Update: Salvage operations at Port Elizabeth harbour enter Phase 2

Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) on Thursday said that progress has been made in re-opening the channel to the Port of Port Elizabeth after gale force winds toppled a crane into the channel on Tuesday morning.

TNPA announced that all commercial shipping had been suspended at the port as salvage and recovery operations started.

It said that a crane boom (jib) has been successfully floated, brought alongside and secured to the quay wall of the berth opposite the breakwater in the port entrance channel.

The debris on the seabed will now be removed and a final dive inspection conducted ahead of the Harbour Master declaring the port safe for shipping. Subject to good weather conditions and no uncontrollable salvage variables, shipping movements have started and will continue from 16:00 on Thursday.

“Notice have been given to vessels to prepare themselves for shipping. Three pilots, a berthing crew and our two tugs will be deployed to expedite the recovery of the shipping backlog,” said Rajesh Dana, Transnet National Ports Authority’s (TNPA) Port Manager.

Phase 2 of the recovery and salvage operation will now commence

This phase entails the removal of the crane boom (jib) from the water and the deconstruction and removal of the landside crane wreckage from the port. However, it is envisaged that this will not affect terminal operations or shipping operations.

Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) proceeded with terminal operations yesterday at 13:15. The cargo of four vessels were successfully handled and they are ready to sail. Five more vessels are expected to dock today.

“We want to express our gratitude to all customers and stakeholders for supporting us during this unfortunate incident. The safety of all parties remains our priority and the salvage operation happens under the watchful eye of our engineers,” says Velile Dube, TPT’s General Manager Cape Channel.

Transnet will keep you informed on progress.

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