For Immediate Release
March 11, 2005
Oakland, Calif. (March 11, 2005) - It was tricky enough getting the Port of Oakland’s new giant container cranes across the Pacific Ocean, safely under the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges and berthed at the Port. But now how do you get them off the vessel and onto the dock? Imagine the challenge of moving a 1,500 ton giant container crane that’s as tall as a 24-story building from ship to shore! Today the Port of Oakland successfully transferred one of its new giant container cranes from boat to land. The process began Friday morning, March 11, 2005 and took a total of about five hours. Port of Oakland’s head of the Crane Department Terry Smalley said, “It’s an amazing process moving such a valuable and mammoth-sized piece of equipment. It takes a lot of preparation, attention to detail and teamwork.”
This fascinating procedure involves rolling the crane off the vessel on a specially built rail bridge that connects the ship and the dock. Once the crane is on the bridge landside, then it is lifted up by using several high-pressure crane jacks. The crane jacks can lift 400 tons each and a pair of the high-pressure crane jacks is used for each of the four legs of the crane. Then the sets of temporary wheels (called bogies) that were used to roll the crane off the ship are removed. The jacks are used to lower the crane onto another temporary rail ramp that is perpendicular to the offload rails. The permanent wheels on the crane are already in proper position for this placement. Finally the crane is rolled down the ramp and onto the permanent crane rail that runs parallel to the dock’s edge.
Media will be allowed limited access at Berth 32, Saturday, March 12, 2005. The crane unloading will begin at approximately 10:30 a.m. and continue for 4-5 hours.
Port of Oakland Executive Director Jerry Bridges said, “These giant cranes along with all the improvements we’ve made over the last few years will help keep the cargo moving efficiently through the Oakland seaport and California. The two new container cranes bring our super post-Panamax inventory up to 19.” Bridges added, “The container cranes are symbolic of the Port of Oakland's productivity, contribution to the economic vitality of the region and the importance of the Oakland seaport as an international gateway for the United States.”
The new Port of Oakland cranes are among some of the largest in the world in the category of what is called the super post-Panamax cranes. They are built to handle the newer and wider vessels. These giant cranes have excellent outreach with a boom that can extend as many as 23 containers wide.
The crew of the vessel Zhen Hua 1 lowered the apexes from 241 feet (about as high as a 24-story building) down to 210 feet so that they would fit under the Golden Gate and Bay Bridges. It sailed under the Golden Gate with good clearance (about 15-20 feet of clearance). It was a spectacular sight due to the tighter squeeze under the Bay Bridge, as the cranes passed under the span with about 6 feet of clearance, Saturday, March 5, 2005.
Port Deputy Executive Director Joe Wong commented, “The Port of Oakland’s new cranes enhance our ability to help the flow of commerce in California and allow us to better serve as a relief valve for the congestion we’ve seen during the peak shipping season at Southern California ports.”
The cranes will be able to accommodate the newer generation of container ships currently being used in the maritime industry. They have the ability to load or discharge over thirty-five cargo containers per hour. The landed cost of one of these cranes (including design, purchase, shipping, and delivery at the Port of Oakland) is approximately $7 million.
Next week the Port of Oakland welcomes one of the world’s largest container ships - the 8,200 TEU (twenty-foot-equivalent) CMA CGM Hugo. The Hugo will be arriving at the Oakland International Container Terminal where there are already six super post-Panamax cranes in place.
The newly built CMA CGM Hugo is owned by a French company, Compagnie Maritime d’Affretement, and is 1,096 feet long, longer than three football fields; 140.4 feet wide, 30 feet wider than the Panama Canal; with a draft of 47.6 feet when fully loaded. The Hugo is able to carry enough cargo to completely fill a 1 million-square-foot regional shopping center with TVs, toys, clothes, shoes, and other products stacked eight feet high.
The Port of Oakland was established in 1927 as an independent department of the City of Oakland. The Port of Oakland oversees Oakland International Airport, the Oakland Seaport and 19 miles of waterfront. The Oakland Seaport is the 4th largest container port in the U.S.
Director of Communications
Media and Public Relations