Published On: Mon, Apr 30th, 2018

Xin Guang Hua safe and secure in the port of Curaçao

WILLEMSTAD - The second largest cargo ship in the world, the Xin Guang Hua, was safely sailed into the port of Willemstad on Sunday, April 29th. This so-called 'heavy lift vessel' entered with two floating docks of Damen Shiprepair Curaçao, one of 230 meters long and one of 120 meters. Along with these two docks, equipment came along to be able to dredge in the water so that these docks can be placed where they will perform their work. This is an added value for our port. With this additional capacity, Damen will generate more shipping traffic and more economic activities in our harbor”, according to Minister Steven Martina who has CPA, KTK, CPO and CDM in his portfolio. The minister also congratulates the employees of CPA, CPO and KTK with their good work this morning.

Floating docks Damen

The ship Xin Guang Hua left the port of Rotterdam, the Netherlands, for a journey of 5000 miles on 31 March, and reached the coast of Curaçao on 26 April. It remained offshore to loosen the so-called 'sea fasteners’; these are iron constructions that ensure that the docks are properly secured to the cargo ship and do not come loose or slide on the open sea. On Saturday 28 April at about 11 am a delegation of Damen Shiprepair Curaçao together with Minister of Economic Development, Dr. Steven Martina and Minister of Transport, Transport and Urban Planning, Mrs. Zita Jesus-Leito and other 'stakeholders' went on board of the Serendipity for a tour to welcome this ship to Curaçao. During a short ceremony, Director of Damen Shiprepair Curaçao, Mr. Lodewijk Franken, just as the two ministers, held a short speech followed by a toast and a salute of two KTK tugs that sprayed water on the ship. At 2 o'clock in the afternoon, 4 tugboats from KTK, Manta, Barakuda, Mero and Tribon left the port to assist Harbor Master Mr. Marlon La Roche and the two 'senior' pilots, Mr. Michael Comenencia and Mr. Casper Neuman, with the piloting of this gigantic ship into the harbor. As soon as the bunches of the tugs were stuck, the process began to drag the ship towards the port entrance. The wind and currents had become so intense that the harbor master and the two senior pilots together with Damen concluded that it was not safe to enter the port at that time. The operation was postponed until the following morning, which was Sunday, April 29 at 4:30 am.

From 4 o'clock the tugs left for the ship that was offshore and together with the three pilots the process was continued in a second attempt to take the cargo ship into the port. By 6 o'clock in the morning, this ship with a length of 255 meters and 68 meters wide entered the port of Willemstad and came about a meter below the high Juliana bridge and by 9 o'clock the anchor was thrown into the bay of Schottegat. A tugboat with a pilot on board stays there 24/7 for safety. It is expected that the two docks will come off the ship very early tomorrow, Monday 30 April. With the arrival of these two docks, Damen Shiprepair Curaçao is expanding its capacity so that it will attract more shipping traffic and generate more economic activities in the port.

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