Kingston crane operators take up training role6 March 2023
Kingston Freeport Terminal in Jamaica, West Indies, has sent two of its crane operators to Nigeria to help train the ship-to-shore (STS) crane team at Lekki Deep Sea Port.
The crane operators, Anthony Davis and Kaneil McKenzie, left the island to spend three months in Lagos, where they will provide support to the STS crane operators training programme.
Lekki Deep Sea Port, which has been operational since October 2022, is a multi-purpose port located in the Lagos Free Zone. Nigeria’s first deep sea port will be equipped with 13 quay cranes for a capacity of 2.5 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) on a 1.2km-long quay with a depth of 16m. The facility will handle vessels with a capacity of up to 15,000 TEUs to rank as one of the largest in West Africa.
Carlos Cabrera, chief operating officer at Kingston Freeport Terminal, said that Lekki Deep Sea Port had “reached out for support” before adding: “We’ve got really good crane operators.”
Davis commented that it would be “an exciting trip”, while McKenzie said that the pair would "work together” to do their best.
Though Kingston Freeport Terminal did not mention the types of cranes the pair would be providing support on, last year, Lekki Deep Sea Port received a delivery of seven cranes, two STS cranes and five rubber-tyred gantry (RTG) cranes from Chinese company ZPMC. That was a month after the delivery of three super post-Panamax STS cranes and ten RTG cranes, bringing the total number of the cranes to five STS cranes and 15 RTG cranes.
Nigeria’s The Guardian said the STS cranes can service the largest container vessels, which are capable of carrying more than 18,000 TEUs.
“The specifications of the STS cranes include a fixed rail line at the quayside to access vessels and reduce delays moving across bays, with a lifting capacity of 65 tons in twin-lift mode, 50 tons in single lift mode and 85 tons under the hook beam,” the report in The Guardian continued.
The cranes can reach out from the quayside up to 61m and have an air draft of 52m and a span of 30.5m beneath the crane.
The chief operating officer of Lekki Port, Laurence Smith, stated in the online article that an STS crane generates 300 lux of light, making the surrounding environment appear like daylight so that the stevedores can work safely at night.
He added that a personnel elevator is installed for operators’ comfort and safety and that the cabin is fitted with an ergonomic seat so that the operators can find the most optimal comfortable position for themselves. Cameras are strategically equipped around the cranes to assist the operators with different angles to support the operation.
“From a customer and stakeholder perspective, the STS can more than double the performance of any port crane in Nigeria today, positioning Lekki Port as the future preferred gateway into Nigeria and beyond. Lekki Port is indeed a game-changer,” Smith said.
Managing director, Lekki Port, Du Ruogang, said the equipment would be the most sophisticated port equipment to be used in Nigeria and will completely change the port landscape, putting Nigeria at the forefront of container operations in West Africa.
Lekki Port LFTZ Enterprise Ltd (LPLEL) is a joint venture enterprise owned by a group of investors led by the Lekki Port Investment Holdings Inc (comprising China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd. and Tolaram Group), the Lagos State Government and the Federal Government of Nigeria through the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA).
LPLEL is required to develop, build and operate a common user, multipurpose port under a concession agreement and has the right to sub-concession terminal operations to other companies.