In October 2017 we were invited to quote and won the contract for the shipment of 5 Straddle Carriers from the port of Fos-Sur-Mer in Marseille, France for and on behalf of the Port of Cork Company. This was a very exciting contract to win and we were honoured to take on such a challenging project. Each Straddle Carrier was 11.25 x 5.03 x 15.4m and each weighed 63MT so the vessel would have to sail from Fos-Sur-Mer to Cork with her decks open during a time of year when the Bay of Biscay is not so friendly!
We chartered a vessel from Amasus Shipping called the MV.’Schokland’ to take on this task. Our Operations Director Seán Murphy flew to France on Monday 05th of December to oversee the loading and lashing of the goods prior to the vessel sailing for Cork. Loading commenced at 0600Hrs on Wednesday 06th and after all units were lashed accordingly the operation completed at 1700Hrs. The vessel departed at 1900Hrs for what was supposed to be a 6.5 day transit to Cork. However the vessel had to make safe anchorage at Vigo Bay off the Portuguese coast for several days waiting for the weather to improve in order to make the dash across the Bay of Biscay.
The vessel eventually arrived in Cork on Monday 18th of December which was 12 days after leaving France, however, to the credit of Amasus, the correct decisions were made to anchor and wait out the bad weather to protect the cargo. On the morning of Monday 18th Seán Murphy and a specially selected stevedoring team mobilised at 0600Hrs to set up an LTM 500T East Cork Mobile Crane to unload them from vessel to quay. We commenced the unloading after our safety checks and toolbox talks with all involved at 0910Hrs and completed safely at 1158Hrs.