There was much activity in the port today (August 24) with ships at both container terminals, Autoport, and Gold Bond Gypsum. Most noticeable however were the two ships at anchor in the lower harbour, and one of those certainly stood out.
Aside from its bright yellow paint and the "BigLift" name emblazoned on its flanks, the ship's two 700 tonne capacity cranes, standing at attention were hard to miss. The 16,341 gt, 13,740 dwt ship was built way back in 1984 by Hitachi, Innoshima and is the "grande dame" of 25 ship BigLift fleet. A versatile vessel capable of carrying a variety of large and heavy cargoes, its cranes can work in combination to lift 1400 tonnes. It also has a 2500 tonne capacity stern ramp for RoRo cargoes. Hatches, tween decks and tank tops are rated for heavy loads of up to 15 tonnes per square meter.
Most unusual on this trip however is a deck load cargo of miscellaneous containers, most of which are leased boxes (There is no telling what is in the ship's holds). The ship has a capacity of 1,050 TEU. By my count it had about 191 forty foot containers on deck - the equivalent of 382 TEU.
Many of those containers are from OVL (O.V.Lahtinen), the Helsinki-based container leasing company, owner of more than 2,000 containers, mostly dedicated to Europe / Asia trades. The ship's last port was Kotka, Finland, so perhaps it loaded the sea-cans there. [OVL operates a "one way, one fee" service, where users do not have to pay to transport empties.]
BigLift is part of the Spliethoff Group (of 50 ships) which operates a twice monthly container service (seasonally) to the Great Lakes, carrying shipper's containers, so this voyage may be tied into that service. In any event, once the ship received Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) clearance, it sailed for Montreal.
The other ship at anchor is, in some ways, a more typical type: the bulk carrier Golden Diamond.
A vessel of 41,718 gt, 74,138 dwt, it was built in 2013 at the Pipavav Shipyard by Pipavav Defence and Offshore Engineering (since renamed Reliance Naval and Engineering Co Ltd - currently in administration) at Rajulah, India and is operated by Thome Shipping Private Ltd of Singapore.
The ship is in Halifax for hull cleaning. In the photos it appears that a Canadian Border Services or RCMP boat is alongside. The ship seems to be in ballast, so is likely headed for one of the iron ore loading ports in Quebec. In recent months it has been reported in Sept-Iles (April 14), Port Cartier (April 22-24) and was in Quebec June 6, but since then in the Caribbean and Brazil, so will likely not need a CFIA exam. However it would be a candidate for contraband inspection.
Update The Golden Diamond sailed for Port Alfred (La Baie), QC, which is not a bulk export port, so must have been carrying some cargo for the aluminum smelters. Its last port was Trombitas, Brazil, a noted bauxite port, so perhaps the ship had a "ballast cargo".
At Autoport, it was the fmailiar Morning Lena back again with a load of German autos. (It was here May 11 ).
Built in 2010 by Hyundai Ulsan, it is registered at 70,853 gt, 27,927 dwt, and has a capacity of 8100 CEU. On its last visit it also called at Pier 9C with non-automobile RoRo cargo. This time however it went directly to Autoport.