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Monster wharf crane is shipped out in pieces

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Getting a 70-tonne vehicle up to St Helena’s airport site was challenging enough – but the crawler crane shipped out from Walvis Bay weighs in at three times that.

The 230-tonne monster had to be dismantled into 33 sections to be loaded on the supply ship NP Glory 4, according to the news website Informante.

But it says it won’t be necessary to drive the crane up the 14-kilometre haul road to the airport site, because it’s to be used for construction of the island’s first permanent wharf, in Rupert’s Bay.

That’s just as well, given the crane’s top speed of 1.5 kilometres per hour (on the flat, presumably).

The loading operations were complicated by the size of the dismantled units, as well as the sheer weight,” reports the website.

“The heaviest component of the crane, the base machine or car body, weighed in at a whopping 40 tonnes.

“Basil Read also loaded a truck and specially-designed flatbed trailer on the ship.”

Manufacturer Liebherr says its LR 1200 crane offers “quick and easy assembly” and “practical, cost-effective transportation.”

Its main boom reaches more than 100 metres high and it can lift almost its own weight.

Ironically, the construction of the wharf will mean that cargo can be unloaded from ships that do not have their own crane…

Liebherr 1200 crane
Walvis Bay ships giant crawler crane – Informante

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