Saturday, 28 April 2018

Tide restricted OOCL United Kingdom departs Felixstowe with assistance of 3 Svitzer tugs 260418

Published on 27 Apr 2018

As the Harwich Haven pilot boards the tide restricted OOCL United Kingdom, with a draught of 15.6 metres, alongside Felixstowe Berth 8, three Svitzer tugs leave the tug pontoon to standby the ship awaiting further instructions from the pilot. The radio comes alive the the pilot saying where he wanted the tugs. Svitzer Kent goes for the centre lead aft as a ship of this size and draught requires a powered indirect out of the harbour. Svitzer Shotley goes for the centre lead forward. Normally, a third tug would make fast on the quarter but as the 2 new STS gantry cranes which was delivered last month were positioned over the bow the pilot wanted the Svitzer Sky to make fast on the starboard shoulder for ensurance the bow would not cause any problems. Once the tugs were made fast, the lines fore and aft were slackened and bought back onboard. The Sky was the first tug to increase power away from the quay with Kent and Shotley following suit. Steadily the OOCL United Kingdom eases parallel from the berth before the forward tugs ease power so the pilot could use tide and the Kent to back her into the channel. 

As the Hong Kong enters the channel the bow begins to swing starboard with the two bow tugs and thrusters. Sky is released from the shoulder and heads around the stern to position on the port quarter ready for a push indirect. The pilot comes ahead on the main engine and gets the Shotley to close up to let go from forward. After retreiving their gear, they peel off onto the Felixstowe side and heads back to the pontoon. Approaching the Fort Buoy, the pilot gets the Sky to push up full at a 45 degree angle on the quarter while the Kent moves out on the starboard side at full line load for a powered indirect. Safely out of the harbour, the Sky comes away from the ships side and heads back to the pontoon while the Kent eases and drops in astern to let go and head back to the pontoon.

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