December 4 - The Port of Duluth, USA has handled a total of 16 electrical transformers, each weighing over 300 tonnes, for a major power transmission line in the Canadian province of Alberta.

The transformers were shipped from Antwerp, Belgium to the port in succession aboard Hansa Heavy Lift (HHL) vessels, and were discharged along with nearly 500 crates of smaller components, at the Clure Public Marine Terminal in Duluth.

The first shipment, which was transported aboard the HHL Mississippi, arrived in July, with the last two shipments arriving on the HHL Amur in October and December.

Two of the transformers were loaded out on rail in September, using specialised 16-axle railcars. The remaining units will be transported on a series of trains scheduled with Canadian Pacific, and will set the record for the highest count of independent, over-dimensional trains used for a single heavy haul project.

Fracht USA is handling the turnkey logistics for the entire transmission line project and owns two of the only four specialised railcars in North America that are able to handle cargo of this size.

Commenting on the KRL16800 series cars which are handling the transformers, Benjamin Liewald, senior vice president of projects at Fracht USA said: "We worked on refining the design and engineering on our cars for almost two years to bring out the best product possible."

"Between the lightweight steel and high load capacity of 800,000 lbs (362.9 tonnes), it is a new generation of railcars and we are pleased that this project started only a few months after the railcars rolled out of Kasgro's factory," he added.

Duluth's public terminal, the port's only breakbulk terminal, is owned by Duluth Seaway Port Authority and operated by Lake Superior Warehousing.