LINX has bolstered its capabilities to support long-term customer, BlueScope, at their Port Kembla operation with the arrival of a second harbour crane.
The LINX-owned Liebherr LHM420, one of only a handful in Australia, landed at Port Kembla in mid-December 2021 after a short journey from LINX’s Henderson operation in Western Australia and joins the existing Liebherr LHM400S harbour crane known as ‘Big Red’.
Nicknamed ‘Hendo’ by the local team the new addition is now in full swing. The towering 350 tonne, 33-metre-high crane features a max boom height of 68 metres and is capable of loading up to 60 tonne of steel products in a single lift. LINX and BlueScope expect it to further improve loading and unloading on what is already a busy and efficient site.
Vince Trotter, Executive General Manager, LINX Port Services, said the relocation of the crane to Port Kembla to support BlueScope was representative of the strong long-term relationship between the two parties, both keen to see the local operation reach its potential.
“The relocation of a crane this size is logistically significant however the extra loading and unloading capacity this crane provides, and the broader benefit it will deliver to a crucial part of BlueScope’s operation, made it an easy decision and well worth the effort,” said Vince.
Glen Seymour, Marine Contracts and Development at BlueScope, agreed saying, “LINX’s solution to provide a second mobile harbour crane in Port Kembla provides significantly increased vessel loading productivity – reducing overall vessel time at berth and enabling increased scheduling flexibility, improved utilisation and freight savings. A great example of LINX’s ability to identify opportunities and implement solutions that deliver real improvements.”
Moving such a bespoke piece of equipment in its entirety across challenging seas in the middle of a pandemic that is impacting labour and supply chains presented plenty of challenges.
Adrian Moore, LINX Cargo Care Group Mobile Equipment and Fixed Assets Manager, said with so many moving parts to the operation there was a real need for patience, flexibility, and clear communication.
“It was a complex process, and the weather in WA at the time did slow things a little but thankfully we engaged partners who are the best in their fields. Aside from our own specialists who were able to showcase some of their own skills on a unique lift such as this, we had ten different partners contribute to this project. Their expertise and professionalism were a significant reason we were able to overcome the challenges and deliver,” said Adrian.