The Wando Welch Terminal of Charleston Harbour has received two new ship-to-shore (STS) cranes to further enable the handling of neo-Panamax vessels.
The cranes, produced by Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industry Co in China, feature a lift height of 155 feet and are the last part of continued efforts to improve the Wando Welch Terminal’s infrastructure for handling larger ships – an investment that will total $48.8 million.
The Wando terminal will return to a three-berth facility once the cranes have been commissioned.
SCPA President and CEO, Jim Newsome, stated: “The cranes are an integral part of the Port’s plans to modernize existing terminals in order to more efficiently handle big ships.
“Along with the Wando Terminal wharf strengthening project, bigger cranes enable the Port to continue to meet the needs of our customers and deliver the operational reliability and productivity we are known for in the U.S. port industry.”
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Along with the acquisition of new cranes, four existing cranes are being upgraded to match the 155 feet lift height – with a projection of nine out of 13 cranes at the Wando Terminal being neo-Panamax in size by fall 2019.
Currently, 20 of 27 calls of vessels too large for the Panama Canal are handled by the SCPA.
By April 2018, two weekly services of vessels exceeding 13,000 TEU will run.
In 2020, once the harbour deepening project has been completed, Charleston will be offering 52 feet deep channels in the inner harbour and 54 feet deep channels in the Entrance Channel.