Sunday, 4 November 2018

Previous record holder Emma Maersk departs Felixstowe at sunset. Two tugs assist 31st October 2018

The 2006 Guinness world record breaker Emma Maersk alongside Felixstowe Berth 9 was due to leave during the day but got pushed back to 15:30. A Harwich Haven Pilot went across from Harwich to Felixstowe tug pontoon, where he was taken to the gangway of the Emma Maersk. Once onboard and after a chat with the captain, the pilot radios Harwich VTS to say there would be about a 30 minute delay as cargo operations hadn't been completed. As time went on the cranes went up one by one. The pilot radios VTS that they were ready for services and the two tugs. Svitzer Deben and Svitzer Kent leave the pontoon and stands by the Emma Maersk for further instructions. The pilot gets both tugs on centre lead forward and aft. Kent goes centre lead aft while Deben goes centre lead forward. Crew onboard the ship throw down a heaving line to connect up the tugs. Hugs back off as the lines fore and aft are released two by two leaving springs to last. Deben and Kent stretch thei lines and build up to a 50% before increasing further. Slowly she came away from the fenders into the channel. As the pilot runs the engine ahead, Kent stops towing and drops in a stern while the Deben moves right ahead and slackens ready to let go forward. The crew slowly lower the line back down on to the Deben. The pilot then asked the Deben to position on the port quarter for the 90┬░Beach End corner so they peel off onto the Felixstowe side swinging around releasing black smoke as they go up the side of the ship. Increasing revs on the Emma, the Deben positions on the port quarter and Kent gets ready for a powered indirect. The pilot gets the Deben to push up full on the port quarter while the Kent moves out onto the starboard quarter at full line load. Safely around the 90┬░ Beach End turn both tugs were released and stood down.
Published on 4 Nov 2018


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