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Displaying items by tag: Atlantic Container Line

Peel Ports Group in the UK has invested in two new ship-to-shore (STS) container cranes for the Port of Liverpool (Terminal 1), which were built by Liebherr Container Cranes Limited and likewise for the Port of Cork's new pair of STS cranes as Afloat reported today.

The investment at the Merseyside port of new infrastructure is to further support growth from Intra European Feeder networks (including Afloat's adds BG Freight Line) and specialist carrier Atlantic Container Line (ACL).

A significant investment for the company, the new container gantry cranes will increase the number of (STS) cranes at the terminal and overall berth productivity still further whilst increasing height and reach capabilities of the terminal.

The new design utilises high tensile steel and a lattice boom and beam construction, designed and built by Liehberr, resulting in a lighter crane with reduced wheel loads, a key consideration due to the narrow span and quay structure at the Port of Liverpool’s Terminal 1.

David Huck, Managing Director at Peel Ports said: Our investment in the very latest 'Panamax' container cranes at Terminal 1 demonstrates our long term commitment to investing in our customers and further compliments our Irish Sea hub proposition connecting the world to Liverpool and by far the largest consuming and exporting region of the UK.

The new cranes will significantly enhance the Port of Liverpool’s capabilities for ACL, as well as other current and future users of Terminal 1. For us, innovation and improvement are at the heart of our Port-centric solutions, and we’re excited to get the new cranes in place and commissioned for the start of 2022.

ACL is the Port of Liverpool’s longest-serving container carrier and, in 2019, signed a 15-year contract extension agreement with Peel Ports for container and roll-on / roll-off (RoRo) operations. The agreement is valid until 2035 and signifies ACL’s confidence in the growing volume of transatlantic trade between the UK and North America. (See Afloat's coverage dating from 2016 featuring Atlantic Star, leadship of ACL's 4th generation (G4) con-ro ships).

Andrew Abbott, CEO at ACL said: “Liverpool has been Atlantic Container Line’s home port in the UK for 54 years. The port has seen four generations of ships make calls twice a week as technology changed and transatlantic cargo volumes grew. ACL’s current generation of Container/RoRo vessel is twice as large as its predecessor, but uses the same footprint in order to fit through the lock at Royal Seaforth.

“To carry all the extra cargo, the new ships are considerably higher, so high, state-of-the-art gantry cranes are essential in order to productively handle them. Peel Ports answered the challenge with brand-new hardware, enabling them to handle the new ACL vessels more quicky and more efficiently than ever before.

“We congratulate Peel Ports for this fantastic accomplishment. ACL looks forward with confidence to a bright future at the Port of Liverpool.”

Published in Ports & Shipping

Ferry & Car Ferry News The ferry industry on the Irish Sea, is just like any other sector of the shipping industry, in that it is made up of a myriad of ship operators, owners, managers, charterers all contributing to providing a network of routes carried out by a variety of ships designed for different albeit similar purposes.

All this ferry activity involves conventional ferry tonnage, 'ro-pax', where the vessel's primary design is to carry more freight capacity rather than passengers. This is in some cases though, is in complete variance to the fast ferry craft where they carry many more passengers and charging a premium.

In reporting the ferry scene, we examine the constantly changing trends of this sector, as rival ferry operators are competing in an intensive environment, battling out for market share following the fallout of the economic crisis. All this has consequences some immediately felt, while at times, the effects can be drawn out over time, leading to the expense of others, through reduced competition or takeover or even face complete removal from the marketplace, as witnessed in recent years.

Arising from these challenging times, there are of course winners and losers, as exemplified in the trend to run high-speed ferry craft only during the peak-season summer months and on shorter distance routes. In addition, where fastcraft had once dominated the ferry scene, during the heady days from the mid-90's onwards, they have been replaced by recent newcomers in the form of the 'fast ferry' and with increased levels of luxury, yet seeming to form as a cost-effective alternative.

Irish Sea Ferry Routes

Irrespective of the type of vessel deployed on Irish Sea routes (between 2-9 hours), it is the ferry companies that keep the wheels of industry moving as freight vehicles literally (roll-on and roll-off) ships coupled with motoring tourists and the humble 'foot' passenger transported 363 days a year.

As such the exclusive freight-only operators provide important trading routes between Ireland and the UK, where the freight haulage customer is 'king' to generating year-round revenue to the ferry operator. However, custom built tonnage entering service in recent years has exceeded the level of capacity of the Irish Sea in certain quarters of the freight market.

A prime example of the necessity for trade in which we consumers often expect daily, though arguably question how it reached our shores, is the delivery of just in time perishable products to fill our supermarket shelves.

A visual manifestation of this is the arrival every morning and evening into our main ports, where a combination of ferries, ro-pax vessels and fast-craft all descend at the same time. In essence this a marine version to our road-based rush hour traffic going in and out along the commuter belts.

Across the Celtic Sea, the ferry scene coverage is also about those overnight direct ferry routes from Ireland connecting the north-western French ports in Brittany and Normandy.

Due to the seasonality of these routes to Europe, the ferry scene may be in the majority running between February to November, however by no means does this lessen operator competition.

Noting there have been plans over the years to run a direct Irish –Iberian ferry service, which would open up existing and develop new freight markets. Should a direct service open, it would bring new opportunities also for holidaymakers, where Spain is the most visited country in the EU visited by Irish holidaymakers ... heading for the sun!

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