Crowley Completes Discharge of Gas Plant Modules

Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Crowley Maritime Corporation's energy and marine services has safely completed the tug-and-barge transportation and discharge and delivery of oversized cargo across a remote beach in Cabinda Province Angola, West Africa to the Cabinda Gas Plant. In partnership with Chicago Bridge and Iron (CB&I) and Cabinda Gulf Oil Company (CABGOC), a wholly owned Chevron subsidiary, Crowley was contracted for the loading, marine transportation, discharging and delivery of oversize modules and support accessories to the Cabinda Gas Plant, which is about three miles from the beach landing point. The fleet required for the sealift included large (400 x100-ft.) barges, powerful ocean going tugs, small lighter tugs to assist in the beaching operation and a myriad of support equipment.

The initial tug and barge departed Houston Sept. 14. The second and third tug and barge combinations sailed at staggered intervals thereafter, and the final pair of vessels left Houston Oct. 21. The journey from Houston to Cabinda Province is over 6,600 nautical miles requiring approximately 40 days at sea. The transportation and discharge of all of the cargo from the four tug and barge tandems concluded Dec. 2. Upon arrival at the beach in Cabinda Province, Angola, the Crowley team safely maneuvered the barges ashore, ballasting and anchoring each in position to avoid the sub-sea pipelines in place nearby. Drawing on previous remote beach landing experience in the Russian Far East, the team assembled a bridge from the barge to the beach using ramps and flexi-floats to discharge the cargo from the barge.

The Crowley multinational team at the job site consisted of 34 personnel from the United States, Russia, Brazil, Italy, Venezuela, the Ukraine, Netherlands and the United Kingdom. They worked 17,136 man hours without a lost time incident, setting offshore moorings, beaching barges, making roads, and providing heavy lift and land transportation services. Cargo handled included a 120 foot long, 90 ton Deethanizer Column, containers, structural steel and three Motor Control Center (MCC) buildings. The largest MCC building measured 75 feet long by 25 feet wide and weighed 126 tons. In four of the past six years, Crowley has performed major open beach remote landings in three different locations in two countries for world-class Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractors including CB&I, Bechtel Corp., Enka Construction & Industry Co., Inc., and ABB, all of whom provide a wide-range of services to major oil companies such as ExxonMobil, Shell and Chevron. Crowley is able to bring many resources to major projects. Each remote beach landing project has its own challenges, which Crowley uses to innovate.

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