Shipping movement suspended following harbour crane collapse
The Port Elizabeth harbour has temporarily suspended all commercial shipping movement after a container crane collapsed due to gale-force winds earlier this week.
The collapsed crane is partly blocking the channel entrance. The IMPSA crane collapsed on Tuesday after winds, reaching speeds of up to 103km/h, hit the coast.
The crane fell onto a stationary train trailer and partly into the water.
By 10am on Thursday a letter had been sent to all shipping agents and stakeholders informing them of the decision.
In a statement on Thursday, Port Manager Rajesh Dana said the crane fell at Berth 103 at the PE Container Terminal – partly into the entrance channel.
“As a result of this and in the interest of navigational safety, all commercial shipping movements in the Port of Port Elizabeth have been suspended until the port entrance channel has been cleared,” he said.
“Transnet has appointed a contractor to assist with the salvage and recovery of the crane.”
Dana said the salvage work method, as well as a risk assessment, had already been formulated and approved.
“A shipping recovery plan has been formulated and will be shared by the Harbour Master, Captain Brynn Adamson.
“Subject to favourable weather conditions and other salvage operational variables the port entrance should be cleared by 6pm on 1 November ... where after shipping operations will resume.”
Dana said while the movements of ships have been hampered by the incident, terminal operations had resumed on Wednesday.