The Vaga Maersk is part of a family of 8, which are Ice Class vessels able to go through the Russian Arctic. All of the family are on the Northern Europe Feeder Link which connects the Baltic regions and North Sea Ports.
Vaga Maersk sailed from Bremerhaven with very little cargo onboard. As she approaches the Sunk, a Harwich Haven pilot launch meets them in the Sunk Diamond where an experienced Harwich Haven pilot boards. Once onboard, the pilot radios Harwich VTS to say he was onboard with a maximum draught of 8.3 metres with no defects for Felixstowe Trinity 5. VTS replies that there was a ready berth planned port side to Felixstowe Trinity 5 and continued with the wind on the Landguard Gauge followed by the height of tide and finally any conflicting traffic. The pilot requests two tugs for berthing, the first outside to make fast centre lead aft and the second inside the harbour to make fast on the starboard shoulder.
After a while, the Svitzer Deben leaves the tug pontoon and heads out of the harbour to be the aft tug. Ten minutes later, the Svitzer Shotley leaves the pontoon to be the bow tug.
Deben all fast aft, they round the Beach End into the harbour where the Shotley makes their approach to make fast on the shoulder.
The pilot stops the engine and then prepares the tugs for a port swing in the middle of the harbour. Shotley squares up and gets ready to push the bow around. Deben moved out onto the starboard quarter and builds to a 50% pull while the Shotley builds to a 50% push on the shoulder.
The Vaga Maersk swings around swiftly to port, the pilot runs the engine astern and gets the Deben to drop in astern to follow them up the harbour. Shotley comes off the ships side in to a check position but then eases as the bow becomes under control again. The pilot gets the Deben to move into a push position aft but soon told to hold what position they were in.
Closer to position, the pilot runs the engine ahead to stop the headway and then carefully uses bow and stern thrust to edge her onto the fenders alongside Felixstowe Trinity 5.
As soon as the 2 springs and 2 head and stern lines were fast alongside the tugs were released and stood down.
Final tie up 4 and 2 each end with springs first fore and aft.