Vessel repair hub delivers return on investment

A crane in action during the construction of the lead-in jetties. Source: TNPA

More than a year since completion, the Port of Port Elizabeth’s new vessel repair facility has serviced more than 140 local and foreign fishing vessels, according to Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) project manager, Pieter-Ben van Rhijn.

The objective of the R200-million facility was to create a thriving vessel maintenance and marine engineering hub.

The construction project included the upgrade of the boat docking bay – where the boat hoist lifts vessels out of the water onto a dry platform for maintenance work – as well as the upgrade of the 40-ton slipway where construction is currently under way to bring the slipway cradle back to 1 200 tons.

Additionally, the 130-year-old lead-in jetties were demolished and rebuilt at a lower level to create more berthing space and enable workers to perform wet repairs as the previous structure had been condemned due to excessive corrosion.

The size of the boat maintenance slab was also increased so that it can now accommodate a minimum of ten vessels at a time, depending on size, as opposed to the two vessels it could previously accommodate.

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