Recently, units of rail tamping machine needed to be transported from Europe to Australia for essential railway maintenance work. The customer had used other RoRo solutions before, but with Höegh’s experience in heavy breakbulk and expertise in safe cargo handling, the customer was assured of a smarter and safer solution for the transport of their valuable cargos.
With rising population and urbanisation, rail transport has been increasing over the years. Globally, there are over 1.3 million kilometres of railway lines, and this is only set to increase going forward. To ensure rail lines keep their geometry, they are maintained regularly by machines such as rail tamping machines. These types of rail tampers are frequently shipped from Europe, United Kingdom, United States and Asia and Höegh has reliable and diverse solutions to offer the rail industry.
Dependable equipment for rail cargo
Höegh has transported trains and train equipment all over the world and over the years, has developed equipment to ensure its safe transportation. The custom-built rolltrailers are equipped with integrated rails for the smooth transportation of heavy rail cargo.
This particular shipment was made up of 10 units and one of the units was particularly large with a total weight of 153.9 tonnes. The heavy unit consisted of two sections, with the main section weighing a whopping 83.5 tonnes. This posed a challenge as it was on the limit of the rolltrailer’s capacity of 90 tonnes.
Einar Bassøe, Head of Global Cargo Operations explains: “Our 80 feet rolltrailers are capable of carrying cargo up to 90 tonnes, but to do so, the weight of the unit needs to be distributed between two defined areas on the rolltrailer. To accommodate different types of heavy cargo with such load distribution, several of the 80 feet rollrailers have pre-modified bogies. These rolltrailers have adjusted weight distribution-areas to accommodate different cargo layout.”
Meticulous planning and good cooperation
In ensuring the safe shipment of the heavy machines, Höegh’s Sales team in Australia and Germany teamed up to come up with a solution. They planned meticulously with the Operations team and closely coordinated with the customer in Australia and the agent in Germany, to provide the necessary support.
Using technical drawings, the Cargo Operation Team calculated the optimal position for the cargo on the handling equipment.
Einar explains: “We came up with a solution to use one of our 80 feet rolltrailers with modified bogies. This means that the location of the bogies (wheels) is re-positioned to handle the heavy point-load of the cargo. We worked closely with Seacom, the rolltrailer manufacturer to create an updated calculator for this in order to verify our manual calculations and estimations were precise. There are many factors to consider, and our goal is to ensure that all stress and weight limitations for both vessel and equipment are considered.”
Once the optimal position was verified, the units were loaded on the rolltrailer and wood dunnage beams and lashings were added, to ensure the cargo was properly supported during its entire transportation process.
Germany Breakbulk Sales Manager Abu Nasser shares: “The customer was pleased with the smart and safe solution that was presented to transport their heavy cargo to Australia. Working with a project deadline, the customer could plan its shipment ahead with our reliable Europe to Australia liner service.”