Germany’s Combi Lift has completed the first phase of a transport contract for the Gazprom Amur Gas Processing Plant project in Russia, delivering the first tranche of oversized cargo to Svobodny one month ahead of schedule.
As the exclusive logistics partner for the oversized and heavy lift cargo, Combi Lift delivered the components between May and September, taking advantage of the ice-free periods on the Amur and Zeya rivers.
On behalf of the Linde Group, eight tugs and seven barges were deployed to transport 79 pieces of equipment, a total of 61,755 freight tonnes, from the port of De-Kastri on Russia's east coast to Svobodny. Each 2,371 km trip had a transit time of approximately 21 days.
Combi Lift advised that heavy lift transportation is quite challenging in a place like this, with water depths of only 1.1 m in some areas, and weather conditions are often severe.
The shipping company reports that heavy lift vessels are used to transport the cargo from ports in Europe and Korea, and then transferred to the barges in the sheltered inner anchorage of the port of De-Kastri. Special shallow draft pusher tugs then move the barges up the Amur and Zeya Rivers to Svobodny for discharging at the jetty and transfer the cargo to the last mile logistics service provider.
The four Amur River tugs, four Zeya River shallow draft tugs and seven barges were custom-built by the Damen Shipyards Group for this project. They are designed to cope with extremely low water levels, especially on the Zeya River. All of the tugs and barges sail under the Russian flag, and are classed by Russian River Register (RRR) respectively the Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RMRS).
The entire project scope involves transporting over 176,000 freight tonnes of cargo, including 12 columns weighing 900 tonnes each, in five phases from 2018 to 2022, with the second phase of the project scheduled to begin in May 2019.