Maersk Line has reportedly carried out a number of capacity boosting programs in a bid to add a total of 55,000 TEU to its fleet of containerships, with the latest upgrades taking place at the Qingdao repair shipyard in China, according to Trade Winds.
Alphaliner were reported as saying that five programs, involving 40 ships have gone underway since 2011.
Alphaliner said: “The upgrades are carried out by raising the wheelhouse by the equivalent height of two high cube boxes, so that two extra tiers of containers can be stowed forward of the accommodation block without impairing visibility.
“While the nominal intake is substantially increased, capacity in TEU at 12.7 tonnes remains almost unchanged except for a very slight loss linked to the raised wheelhouse. Deadweight also remains almost unchanged, except for a very slight loss due to the weight of the extra steelwork.
“It also helps to increase the capacity for empty containers on backhaul legs. However, the full intake still cannot be exploited in every case, as deadweight limitations may kick in on headhaul legs before all TEU slots are filled.”
This announcement follows recent news that the shipping line will be focusing its efforts on consolidating its business and cutting capacity across key routes in order to deal with the drop in freight rates.