US-based Port Everglades has unveiled its plan to buy three new low-profile Super Post Panamax container-handling gantry cranes at $13.8m each.
The plan was revealed after the Broward County Board of County Commissioners in Florida approved the port’s $41.4m crane purchase deal, which also includes an option for three more cranes that can be bought by the port anytime within five years of placing the original order.
The new cranes are intended to help the port to meet demands from its existing customers, as well as new services due to be received from the port's multi-million-dollar expansion programme.
Port Everglades’ three new cranes will be constructed by Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries (ZPMC) to meet federal height restrictions due to the port’s proximity to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) in Florida.
The low-profile cranes will be capable of handling containers stacked eight units high and reach across 22 containers on a ship's decks.
Port Everglades’ current gantry cranes are able handle containers stacked only five units high, and can reach out across 16 containers on a ship's deck.
Port Everglades chief executive and port director Steve Cernak said: “Cargo ships are getting larger and several shipping lines already coming to Port Everglades from Europe and South America need Super Post-Panamax cranes now.
“The longer we wait, the higher the price, in addition to increasing our chances of losing important business.
“We cannot afford to wait until our harbour deepening and widening project is completed because the cranes are needed now.”
Port Everglades can currently handle more than one million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) of cargo, and serves as a gateway to Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe and Asia.
Image: Aerial view of Port Everglades entrance channel. Photo: courtesy of Broward County’s Port Everglades.