Felixstowe Dockers

Felixstowe Dockers

Sunday, 31 August 2014

London Gateway clinches edge on Felixstowe


Did not want to post this article - but I believe that it should not be kept as a secret.

Port congestion at the Port of Felixstowe in England has leading big-name shippers such as Maersk Line and China Shipping Container Lines (CSCL) ordering ships up the River Thames to DP World’s London Gateway.

Maersk ordered its Middle East service to unload at London Gateway on August 23 this year, and now it has decided to send another service ship there on August 30.
CSCL has allegedly become tired of waiting for a berth at Felixstowe, advising its customers and partners that Asian imports should be delivered to London.
Customers of Felixstowe suggest that other ships will follow if the situation does not improve, according to the Loadstar.
The congestion has been primarily down to labour shortages and the big growth in imports from Asia, meaning turnaround times have been increasing, thereby exacerbating waiting times for other shippers.
Problems with congestion have already been witnessed in northern Europe this year at the ports ofRotterdam and Hamburg.
The fear for Felixstowe is that DP World London Gateway is edging closer to attaining a prominent Asia-to-Europe shipping line customer on a long-term contract, therefore taking business from the UK’s current largest port.


2 comments made below are on Facebook

They did so well with the xin Beijing that they didn't finish the discharge and it came back to Felixstowe! 12mph doesn't cut the mustard.

You mean the one that got so fed up of waiting for Felixstowe that they went to Gateway - who said they could do all the discharge - yet when they couldn't manage half of it it left Gateway and came BACK to Felixstowe where it was finished in time for it to get back on it's sailing schedule?

Friday, 29 August 2014

October 1 – 7 Golden Week shutdown to cut Maersk A-E capacity 25pc


Maersk A-E capacity 25pcSHIPPING will withdrawn over the Ocober 1 -7 Golden Week holiday in China, with Maersk Line altering one of its Asia-Mediterranean services and Hapag-Lloyd amending its G6 Alliance Asia-North Europe service.
Service withdrawals represent one quarter of Maersk’s average weekly vessel capacity between China and northern Europe.
The service changes will see Maersk Line stopping two of its five strings on the Asia-North Europe trade lane from calling in China.
Maersk has cancelled calls at Chinese ports and Tanjung Pelepas on its AE20 service run together CMA CGM, to the Med in week 41 and week 43.
Maersk said service changes better match supply to demand in line with expected holiday factory output declines, reports Lloyd’s List.
Changes will affect the sailing of the 8,400-TEU Northern Jupiter in week 41 and the 8,400-TEU Maersk Sheerness in week 43.
In total, 22 services call in China before heading to the Mediterranean, although many of these calls are wayport stops on other trade lanes.
Hapag-Lloyd is withdrawing the Loop 4 service, part of the G6 Alliance offering, scheduled to sail from Ningbo on October 4.

ITF watching Hutchison operations in Panama and Indonesia


The ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation) has vowed to keep a close eye on the corporate conduct of global network terminal operator (GNT) Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) in Panama and Indonesia.
In Panama, ITF-affiliated unions are now legally recognised as the most representative of workers at Hutchison’s Panama Ports Company (PPC) but despite this, a company-backed, or ‘yellow’, union has appealed to the Labour Minister of Panama.
There have been ongoing concerns over Freedom of Association for PPC workers, while legitimate questions have been raised over tactics used by the yellow union in their appeal to the Minister.
Panamanian unions at the ITF congress today called for solidarity from comrades in other unions across the world as they continue to fight for their right to collectively bargain for better rights and conditions.


Ray Familathe, international vice president  of the ILWU and ITF dockers’ section vice chair, said: “Hutchison has said they will work with whoever the Government declares, but the ITF believes that they need to work with the union that really represents workers. The ITF will keep a close eye on proceedings.”
Meanwhile, in Jakarta, Indonesia, workers at the Jakarta International Container Terminal are concerned over plans to extend the concession to Hutchison Port Holdings.
Unions say the port would be more profitable for the people of Indonesia if run by the Government.
They want transparency and information about the concession and are calling on the Indonesian Government to consult with the union and stakeholders before any final decision is made.
Workers protested outside Indonesia’s State Palace on August 7 for job security and workers’ welfare and in the past couple of days, the ITF was advised that the union believes there could be retaliation against union leaders.
The JICT union has called on the ITF to write a letter of support to the President of Indonesia.
“The situation is unacceptable. We demand that workers have access to information and a say in their future and that union leaders are not targeted for exercising their right to protest,” said Ray Familathe.
“Indonesia and Panama have both been highlighted as strategic countries for the ITF in the coming four years and affiliates will keep a close eye on developments in both countries.”
The 43rd ITF Congress in Sofia brings together almost 2,000 participants from 379 unions in 116 countries.


Thursday, 28 August 2014

Felixstowe’s loss is Gateway’s gain as congestion grips North Europe’s ports


Phil-Marsh
Phil-Marsh
The ill winds of the winter blew in favour of the new UK container port at London Gateway, when several ships were diverted from Felixstowe to the DP World facility at the start of the year as violent storms battered the North Sea port. But now in the midst of summer, good old fashioned “port congestion” at the Hutchison UK east coast port is the reason given by Maersk Line and China Shipping Container Lines for ordering their ships up the River Thames.
Maersk has already seen its ME1 (Middle East service) Maersk Kimidischarge its imports at London Gateway on August 23 and it has now decided to transfer another ME1 service ship, the Maersk Kyrenia there on August 30.
Meanwhile, CSCL has also apparently got weary of waiting in a queue for a berth at Felixstowe and has advised its customers and partners on the AEX1 loop XIN Beijing that its Asian imports will be discharged at London Gateway.
Indeed, anecdotal reports from customers of the UK’s biggest container port suggest that other ships will follow if the situation at Felixstowe does not improve promptly.


The labour situation at Felixstowe is always stretched during the peak summer holiday season, due historically to too many dockers being allowed time off during the school holiday period, but the unexpected growth in imports this year from Asia has obviously worsened an already tight situation.
Of course Felixstowe is not alone in North Europe in finding it challenging to cope with a year-on-year 9% growth in Asian imports; congestion problems at Rotterdam and Hamburg have been well documented.
The two biggest ports in Europe have, in mitigation, complained that ocean carriers are not maintaining schedules and are arriving with their new ultra-large containerships several days later than advertised still expecting to secure a berth.
Felixstowe has not so far commented on the reason for the current port congestion, and generally does not, however the problems that have caused the severe bottlenecks at Rotterdam and Hamburg in the past weeks will no doubt have a similar underlying cause.
Unfortunately carriers are still as inefficient as ever in advising shippers that their import cargo has been diverted, and seem to communicate the information late and without much empathy.
Indeed, they often appear little interested in the problems that it causes their customers, who arguably might have preferred a few days’ delay awaiting a berth at Felixstowe to the organised chaos of a vessel diversion.
And with container lines’ operation centre priority being to dump cargo before moving on to another port and returning to Asia for another full load, it is exporters which are the biggest sufferers in the change of port, having little time to rearrange their routing.
Meanwhile, another concern to the management at Felixstowe is that London Gateway, with its handling of ad-hoc vessels from Asia, is getting closer to its main target of securing a major Asia to Europe shipping line customer on a long-term contract.

Rotterdam cargo flows returning to normal

CONTAINER operations at the Port of Rotterdam are finally returning to normal following weeks of congestion at Europe’s busiest box port.A spokesman for Rotterdam’s Europe Container Terminals said that waiting times for both barge and feeder vessels at its terminals had been brought to a...

Containership Crashes into Rail Bridge in Fremantle in wild storm




wild storm has caused the containeship AAL Fremantle to break its moorings and force it into the Fremantle railway bridge. The incident occurred last night amid winds reaching up to 122 kph.
AAL Fremantle was unloading its cargo of cars at berth 11, North Quay. Due to the wind the rope at the stern snapped. This resulted in swinging the vessel out into the port.
“Although the mooring lines at the bow of the ships held good, the ships swung out at the stern. The stern of AAL Fremantle came in contact with scaffolding on the Fremantle Rail Bridge and one of the power poles on the bridge subsequently fell into the harbour," was said in a statement by the Fremantle Ports.
The Public Transport Authority (PTA) has closed the rail bridge to assess the damage. David Hynes, official with the authority, added:
"We're able to run trains down as far as North Fremantle, so trains will continue as normal to North Fremantle and we'll have replacement buses running between North Fremantle and Fremantle itself."
Furthermore, Grand Pioneer, a car carrier too, was pulled by the storm from its moorings at berth 12, North Quay, forcing it into the refuelling vessel Parmelia 1.
According to the Fremantle Ports, both cargo vessels have been towed back and an investigation has been launched into the incidents.

Video: Huge ship hits Fremantle Bridge



Fremantle Port's future questioned after container ship hits bridge in wild storm

Updated 
A container ship hits the rail bridge at Fremantle in a storm 18 August 2014
The WA Government must act to fix a looming infrastructure disaster involving Fremantle Port bridges, a transport expert says.
A container ship smashed into a rail bridge in Fremantle during a storm overnight, disrupting train services between North Fremantle and Fremantle stations.
The bridge is now being assessed for structural damage by engineers.
Curtin University professor Peter Newman said it was "totally inappropriate" to have a port right next to a major bridge.
"It was an accident waiting to happen and we're very lucky that the boats didn't go completely through and demolish both bridges because this road bridge is well overdue to be replaced," he said.
Professor Newman said Fremantle is no longer an appropriate place for a port.
"The port needs to shift to Kwinana. Most container ports move out of cities," he said.
"Now we have this incredibly stupid accident happening it just confirms we've got to advance the proposal to shift the port."

Storm surges, rising sea levels 'threat to bridges'

He said the incident highlighted other problems facing that part of the river, including river and storm surges, and a road and rail bridge with a storm surge barrage was needed to prevent washouts.
"It does need to be taken seriously now that the sea level is rising and we're going to have more storm surges," he said.
Infrastructure Australia, of which Professor Newman is a board member, investigated the issue of the bridges in the past, he said.
"We decided it wasn't a nationally significant issue and not a big enough problem, they must be embarrassed now," he said.
"This is a major issue and needs to be put on the top of the list."
At Fremantle Port it's gone up about 10cm in the past 10 to 15 years and the storm surges are higher, so they can't predict the power that would drive those boats off their moorings.
Professor Newman said the State Government has had about 30 years to fix the bridges, but failed to act.
"The reality is the water levels are rising," he said.
"At Fremantle Port it's gone up about 10cm in the past 10 to 15 years and the storm surges are higher, so they can't predict the power that would drive those boats off their moorings."
Professor Newman said if the bridges were left in their current condition, the Government risked having them fall down.
"These are not serious bridges, look around, this is really pathetic that we've got a major port city that depends on these bridges and they're leftover form the 19th Century.
"The rail bridge is a little more solid thank goodness, but it's not going to last if another ship hits it."
He said the bridges came down in the 1950s after a major flood and lives were lost.

'Three years to act on warning system'

Member for Fremantle Simone McGurk said the State Government promised to install an early warning system on the rail line after a ship hit the bridge in 2011.
"They are only just now installing an early warning system to ensure trains stop automatically if the rail bridge is struck by a ship," she said.
"Three years it has taken them to act on that issue and I think that's unacceptable.
"People deserve an absolute safety guarantee that the trains will stop automatically if the bridge is struck."
Ms McGurk said the road traffic bridge adjacent to the rail bridge should also have an early warning system.
"In regard to the traffic bridge, they are not installing that sort of warning system despite successive engineering reports saying the bridge is at an unacceptably high risk of damage or collapse in the event of being struck by a vessel," she said.
"In fact, the traffic bridge needs to be replaced. Ten years ago we had an engineering report saying that bridge needed to be replaced.
"This Government is spending money on expensive repairs, but the bridge needs to be replaced."
The Public Transport Authority said the Fremantle rail bridge could be closed for up to a week.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Crane Breaks Off Bulk Carrier, Falls into Cargo Hold [IMAGES]

Image: TSB
Image: TSB
The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) is investigating an incident this week involving the failure of a crane on board the bulk carrier Seapace while at the port of  B├ęcancour, Quebec.
According to the TSB, one of the cranes on board the vessel failed and fell into the cargo hold.  The crane operator suffered a broken ankle as a result of the incident.
mv seapace bulk carrier
M/V Seapace, image: TSB Canada
mv seapace tsb canada
M/V Seapace, sans forward crane. Image: TSB Canada