SWAYING very slightly in the high winds, a diesel train engine hung suspended by a crane high over the dry dock at Southampton container port.
Ropes were pulled and the crane manoeuvred to get the 44-tonne engine in position to be put on board a ship, ready for transportation to Romania. And after the loading team from Segensworth-based PSP Logistics had finished the delicate task of getting that engine in position, they had to do it twice more for two other engines.
The load was difficult and potentially dangerous, made trickier by high winds in Southampton when it came to loading the engines.
The two 07-16 Plain Line Tampers and the Ballast Regulator engines were bought by CDC Star Limited from a UK firm and needed to be transported to their new owners.
They were rolled off their transport truck onto the floor of the dock. Chains were then attached to each one and they were lifted individually using PSP’s spreader equipment and Solent Stevedores’ 100-tonne crane.
PSP director Simon O’Neill, who oversaw the tricky nine-hour operation, said: ‘We had to take into account every possibility and external factor when lifting the trains from the floor to the vessel.
‘High winds did make it a slightly more tricky affair but we were able to complete the task quickly and safely.’
They were loaded onto vessel The Flinter Fortune and will reach their destination of Constanza in Romania by early next week.
Managing director of PSP Frank Dixie said: ‘This was a particularly unusual cargo and it was quite a sight to see these huge trains lifted around 30ft into the air over Southampton.
‘While one would think it would be more difficult to load these trains compared to our usual task of transporting boats, the process was actually very similar and thanks to our experience in moving military vehicles we were able to get the job done quickly and safely.’