Sunday, 24 February 2019

Maiden voyage Maastricht maersk arrives to the Port of Felixstowe, 3 tugs assist 24th February 2019

Maastricht Maersk is the last and final second Generation Triple E to be delivered to Maersk Line. She was meant to be delivered during May 2018 but the Ship builders and Maersk deferred the delivery date to January 2019 due to a slump in the Asia-Europe trade route. Maastricht Maersk set sail from the ship yard to Vostochniy, the Far East of Russia for bunkers then heads off to China where the filling process starts. Heavily laden, she makes her way through the Suez Canal in a Northbound convoy to Port Said. Once she had finished cargo in Egypt she sailed onto Rotterdam. Cargo complete, she sets sail for Felixstowe with a maximum draught of 13 metres. As she Approaches British waters a Harwich Haven Pilot Launch meets the Maastricht at the Sunk Pilot Station where a pilot boards to assist the captain berth his vessel at Felixstowe. MSC Oliver heading outbound from Felixstowe passes the Maastricht Maersk near the Sunk. The maiden voyage monster heading inbound via the deep water channel radios Harwich VTS to say the pilot was onboard inbound for Felixstowe berth 9 and believed they were planned portside to. VTS replies that there was a ready berth planned portside to Felixstowe Berth 9 then continued with the wind on the Landguard gauge which was 059° and a max of 5 knots. The pilot also asks for a tide reading on the Harwich gauge which was 0.52m, 21cm above prediction. VTS continued with traffic information. After a little while the pilot radios Harwich VTS with the tug order, the pilot requests three Svitzer tugs, two to meet outside the harbour and the third inside the harbour on a bow to bow. VTS radios the duty tug to confirm the plan. Svitzer Deben leaves the tug pontoon to be the first tug out for the Maastricht with Svitzer Sky leaving a few minutes later. Deben makes fast centre lead aft while Sky positions on the starboard quarter for a push indirect around the Beach End turn into the harbour. Svitzer Kent leaves the pontoon to be the forward tug. Approaching the Platters, the pilot gets the Sky to push up on the quarter at a 45° angle to help steer the ship around the corner. Speed decreasing as she enters the harbour, Kent makes fast on the centre lead forward. The pilot runs the engine astern to slow her up ready to swing. The ship begins to twist so the Deben moves onto the starboard beam while the Kent moves onto the port shoulder to counteract the twist. Straightening up nicely, the tugs go easy and get ready for the starboard swing. Sky squares up and pushes up full on the quarter, Deben moves onto the port quarter while the Kent moves onto the starboard shoulder. the pilot also uses the bow thrusters to help swing her around. Swung around, the Kent moves onto the port side and helps pull the bow towards the quay before moving around onto the starboard side in a check position. Deben runs out of space and moves around onto the starboard side into a check position. Sky continues to push her alongside the fenders. As the Spring lines were lowered to the mooring gang to make fast. The Kent is released and pushes up to pin her onto the berth while she is tied up Final tie up 6 and 2 with springs first fore and aft then offshore lines next.

Published on 24 Feb 2019



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