Securing container

caladhmor
12th April 2012, 16:10
How are the "twist locks" locked when a crane places a container on top of another high up on a ship , do the crew have to climb or is there a cherry picker on board? (Pint)

R58484956
12th April 2012, 16:29
Ask the same same on Google and there are hundreds of explanations, plus a few photos of not secured containers.

Kingham SJ
12th April 2012, 17:28
How are the "twist locks" locked when a crane places a container on top of another high up on a ship , do the crew have to climb or is there a cherry picker on board? (Pint)

With very long bars

caladhmor
12th April 2012, 18:14
there is an automatic one but it hasn't had a great run, They all need some human interaction to release them . . . .

Michal-S
13th April 2012, 08:25
Manually operated twistlocks (i.e. these one need to insert into corners on board and close/open by hand or extension pole) are hardly met anymore on pure container vessels. The reason is that stevedores world-wide refuse to do the job on grounds of personal safety and to speed-up cargo operations.
Currently we deal with two basic kinds of twistlocks: semi-automatic that are inserted on shore, locking-up during stowage into lower containers' corners by simple spring-activated spring action but need to be unlocked manually before discharging-using long poles either from deck or from the top of container layer (tier), sometimes using platforms or working craddles attached to container gantry spreader. The other kind are fully-automated twistlocks: lighter ones and with lesser number of movable parts that are inserted ashore and are released by means of vertical pull by container gantry during discharging. Although I have never experienced any problems with them myself, fully-automated twistlocks were found to be responsible in some cases of container stack collapse accidents in last years and their use is (was?) restricted by some classification and insurance companies.
More can be found, for example, on MacGregor, SEC or German Lashing websites.

caladhmor
14th April 2012, 22:34
Found really good info on the SEC website, Just wondering do you need four people with the extended poles to unlock the container as it is being lifted or can one person unlock them one by one and they will stayed unlocked ?

Michal-S
15th April 2012, 07:37
Found really good info on the SEC website, Just wondering do you need four people with the extended poles to unlock the container as it is being lifted or can one person unlock them one by one and they will stayed unlocked ?

One person is enough, seldom more than 2 are employed to do the job and twistlocks will stay in their corners until removed on shore (de-conned).

caladhmor
15th April 2012, 12:03
One person is enough, seldom more than 2 are employed to do the job and twistlocks will stay in their corners until removed on shore (de-conned).

Would the crew start unlocking them before they dock or do they wait until the ship is secured to the dock ?

Michal-S
15th April 2012, 13:19
Would the crew start unlocking them before they dock or do they wait until the ship is secured to the dock ?
Depending on circumstances. On smaller vessels going into inland-situated terminal (Hamburg, Antwerpen etc) it is, sometimes, customary to unlash containers before berthing (but keeping all twistlocks closed!). On bigger vessels crew do not touch lashings as the job is done by stevedores.

Klaatu83
21st April 2012, 22:26
How are the "twist locks" locked when a crane places a container on top of another high up on a ship , do the crew have to climb or is there a cherry picker on board? (Pint)

Now they have automatic twist locks that are placed onto the bottom to the containers and lock in place when they are lowered into position. However, they used to be operated manually. Longshoremen used to have to climb up on top of the rows of containers and place the twist locks in position, and also to remove them and throw them down on dock (make sure you don't stand underneath!). The twist locks were locked and unlocked with long aluminum poles.

In Piraeus, one foreman with whom we worked used to send his own sons (about twelve or thirteen years old) aloft to handle the twist locks. He insisted that if his sons wanted money to go to football matches then they ought to earn it!

In Kuwait the lashing gang were made up of Nepalis (of all people!). When any of the twist locks got jammed they would simply climb straight up the stack of containers and free it, without even giving it a thought. I suppose to someone born and raised in the Himalayas, on the roof of the world so to speak, climbing up a stack of containers is nothing at all!

Andrew Craig-Bennett
21st April 2012, 22:47
Depending on circumstances. On smaller vessels going into inland-situated terminal (Hamburg, Antwerpen etc) it is, sometimes, customary to unlash containers before berthing (but keeping all twistlocks closed!). On bigger vessels crew do not touch lashings as the job is done by stevedores.

There is a running battle over lashing on the west coast of the States - most ships sail with minimum lashings and the crew lash up after sailing. This the US stevedore unions do not like...

Michal-S
22nd April 2012, 10:44
There is a running battle over lashing on the west coast of the States - most ships sail with minimum lashings and the crew lash up after sailing. This the US stevedore unions do not like...
I do know the story! I used to call at St Pedro (Los Angeles) port regularly on one of my vessels (under my command) and I have found stevedores there as one of the biggest pain in the ass and bunch of trouble-makers in the stevedore world. Once, due to bad weather outside, I had to stop the vessel in the port as port workers had not completed satisfactory lashing and my crew was not allowed to perform the job. We have to stay alongside overnight, waiting for new shift to come in the morning, as there was no option for me to go to sea and have the crew working on deck during stormy night. And there was no quiet night alongside for us-I received loads of pressure from charterers, port and trade unions representative who kept coming repeatedly to check if the crew was not doing lashing alongside.
On another occasion, when stevedores got usually unhappy about one of my officers intervening in rough stowage on deck, crane driver positioned hanging container just inches above officer's head (and he stayed in the cross-bay in position where no container could be positioned) trying to scare him off deck.
Do not forget deliberate throwing of lashing bars and turnbuckles anywhere but with as strong force as they could manage to damage our paintwork and to make maximum noise and nuisance possible.
And they claim quite a bunch of greenbacks for their simple work there...

caladhmor
2nd May 2012, 21:56
Would it be acceptable to have people walking on top of the containers?

Michal-S
4th May 2012, 07:44
Would it be acceptable to have people walking on top of the containers?
There is no choice, in most ports, as to walk on top of containers to unsecure semi-automatic twistlocks' handles that cannot be reached from deck level (usually, higher than 4th tier). Only some of the most modern terminals utilise special platforms that can be hooked to container-gantry spreader and moved in narrow space between container bays (fore and aft).
Back in 2006, I was working on feeder container vessel (868 TEU) still equipped with manual twistlocks and some terminals in Rotterdam were not handling them anymore. In that case the crew had to go on top to insert and remove twistlocks, as appropriate. Lousy job, remembering how short of manpower we were that time-just 4 deck ratings and 2 deck officers.(egg)

John Cassels
4th May 2012, 09:39
Guess you never loaded/unloaded at the old Greenock container terminal
35 years ago. It was a continuous battle of nerves with the dock workers
from beginning to end.
One of the many results of loading there was at least one lashing wire left
lying across the compression bar when hatch cover replaced. They always
managed it no matter how many men I had on deck.
Another "trick " was to leave out one bottom twistlock of one corner so that
the stack of 4 high containers was resting on three points.

Michal-S
4th May 2012, 10:25
(Thumb)Oh, there are still numerous terminals like that although I have never been to Greenock and cannot compare that to your experience (and 35 years ago I was only 13 and not yet dreaming of becoming seafarer). Please see one of my replies above concerning LA (San Pedro) container terminal stevedores.

John Cassels
4th May 2012, 19:29
Yes , I've read it.

L.A. stevedores seem like the flowerpot men compared with the desperados
at Greenock.