Port Repair Bids To Be Sought

Tuesday, February 20, 2001
India's Kandla port will invite tenders soon for repairs to jetties, buildings and equipment damaged in last month's earthquake. "We will invite tenders in the next few days to repair the port," A.K. Joti said. He said total damages, including civil structures and mechanical and electrical systems, were estimated at $10.8 million. The port would invite several tenders for each job instead of awarding a comprehensive tender to one group, thus enabling work to begin simultaneously, said Vipul Mittra, port deputy chairman. Operations at the country's busiest port were halted on January 26 by the huge quake that struck the western state of Gujarat, killing at least 30,000 people. Partial operations were resumed on February 3. Several port buildings and storage godowns were damaged and some roads and five general cargo jetties had developed cracks. The signal station tower at the port was tilted and a newly-built office for port security guards was completely damaged. Joti said the port had handled 275,000 tons of cargo since February 3. All 10 general cargo berths and six oil jetties were operating but there was some load restriction on the five general cargo berths with damaged jetties. "We are not handling heavy cargo like containers and steel coils on the jetties which are partially damaged," Joti said. He said a maximum load of 1.5 tons per sq. m. was allowed on these against normal load handling of 3.3 tons. Joti said the port was handling 10 general cargo and three oil ships on Monday. It was handling a total of 31,000 tons of general and liquid cargo every day compared with the normal cargo handling of 40,000 tons, he said. Kandla handles 17 percent of the cargo through India's 12 major ports. - (Reuters)
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