Two container gantry cranes have been loaded at HHLA Container Terminal Burchardkai in Hamburg to be transported on 28 or 29 June to the Estonian capital of Tallinn.
Once in Tallinn, they will start operations at the HHLA TK Estonia terminal.
Both container gantry cranes were in operation at Burchardkai for 16 years. When they commenced operating in 2005, they were among the largest container handling cranes at the Port of Hamburg.
However, the increase in ship sizes in recent years made larger gantry cranes a necessity. Because of this, HHLA put into service a total of five new container gantry cranes for handling ultra large container vessels with a cargo volume of 23,000 standard containers (TEU) and more at Burchardkai back in 2019 and 2020.
They replaced five smaller units, three of which were dismantled in 2020. The two remaining cranes from Kocks will be used at HHLA TK Estonia to handle Baltic Sea traffic. They will make it possible for container vessels with a cargo volume of 14,000 TEU to be handled in Estonia.
The preparations for the challenging transport of the cranes started in 2020. As part of this, a 35-metre-wide gate was built into the flood protection wall at the Burchardkai terminal in order to be able to move the cranes – each of which weighs 1,400 tonnes – from the quayside to the transport barge, which measures 122 x 36.5 metres.
The cranes are expected to arrive at the terminal in Muuga, near Tallinn, on 9 July. The cranes will be customised after arrival and are expected to commence operations by the end of the year.
Even before the transhipment, container gantry crane operators and technicians of HHLA TK Estonia were trained by their Hamburg-based colleagues so that they will be ready to begin operations once the cranes are set up.