The Berth Seven strengthening and dredging works at the Trinity Terminal of the Port of Felixstowe, a member of the Hutchison Ports network, have now been completed.

The dredging contractor, Boskalis Westminster, carried out the work using trailing suction hopper dredgers and a backhoe dredger, namely the ‘Nordic Giant’, with a 13m³ bucket size.

Berth Seven is one of the nine container berths at the Port of Felixstowe. It has now been dredged from 15m to 16.5m below Chart Datum and had the berth box expanded from 55m to 70m.

Hutchison Ports Port of Felixstowe CEO Chris Lewis said: “As the number of ultra-large container ships continues to grow we will continue to improve and upgrade our facilities to meet the needs of our customers.

“Berths Eight and Nine are designed for a maximum depth of 18m and the next phase of development will see further increases to the depths at Berths Six, Eight and Nine.

“The deeper berths are being complemented by dredging planned by Harwich Haven Authority to increase the depth of the approach channel to up to 16m, further reinforcing Felixstowe’s position as the country’s number one deep-sea container port.”

The berth upgrades are accompanied by a programme to expand the reach of ten ZPMC dock cranes to 23 containers wide at Berths Six and Seven. These developments are being undertaken in response to the increasing depth and size of the world’s largest container ships.

Operated on the 2M AE6/NEU3 service to Asia, the 19,630 twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) Manila Maersk was the first vessel to use the deepened berth.

With a 15.6m departure draft, the vessel was the deepest ever docked at the Trinity Terminal.