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Dredges Leave Western Hemisphere for Bahrain

The Tai An Kou is partially ballasted after loadout of two dredges, an idler barge and two work boats. Positioning all the vessels over the submerged deck took only three hours.

The Tai An Kou is partially ballasted after loadout of two dredges, an idler barge and two work boats. Positioning all the vessels over the submerged deck took only three hours.

The Reem Island sits on its cribbing on the semi-submersible’s deck. Cribbing separates the cargo from the deck of the carrier. The vertical stanchions act as markers for placement of equipment on the deck, as well as providing mooring points. The foll

The Reem Island sits on its cribbing on the semi-submersible’s deck. Cribbing separates the cargo from the deck of the carrier. The vertical stanchions act as markers for placement of equipment on the deck, as well as providing mooring points. The foll

Bound for Bahrain In January, the semi-submersible vessel Kang Sheng Kou carries the dredges Noon Island, left, and Reem Island. After taking ownership of the two dredges on December 14, Great Lakes didn’t have time to re-paint them before they left fo

Bound for Bahrain In January, the semi-submersible vessel Kang Sheng Kou carries the dredges Noon Island, left, and Reem Island. After taking ownership of the two dredges on December 14, Great Lakes didn’t have time to re-paint them before they left fo

The dustpan dredge Ohio, left, and cutter dredge Texas, right, are placed in position over the submerged deck of the heavy-lift vessel Tai An Kou.

The dustpan dredge Ohio, left, and cutter dredge Texas, right, are placed in position over the submerged deck of the heavy-lift vessel Tai An Kou.

Early this year, Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company transported four dredges and auxiliary plant to the Middle East to work on projects in Bahrain.

The vessels were carried on semi-submersible heavy lift vessels from Rio de Janeiro and Grand Bahama Island. The company’s internal newsletter carried picture stories of the process, and these stories are used here with the permission of the GLDD Publications Department.

The Reem Island and Noon Island

A few weeks after becoming the property of Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company, the newly renamed trailing suction hopper dredges Reem Island and Noon Island (formerly the Macapa and Boa Vista I) left their home port of Rio de Janeiro aboard the Chinese semi-submersible heavy-lift vessel Kang Sheng Kou, bound for Bahrain. Transfer of ownership from Dragaport of Brazil took place on December 14, the heavy-lift ship arrived in Rio on January 5, the loading of the two vessels took place on January 12 and 13, and the vessel and cargo departed on the voyage January 15. They made the 8210-nautical-mile voyage via the Cape of Good Hope in 28 days, arriving in Bahrain by February 12, having made an average speed of 12.22 knots. Off-loading was performed the next day.

The Texas and Ohio

Photos by Richard Adams and Sam Morrison

In early February, after delays caused by erratic winds, the load-out of Great Lakes Dredge & Dock dredging plant in the Freeport Harbor on the Grand Bahama Island went smoothly. The Chinese semi-submersible heavy-lift vessel Tai An Kou received the dredges Texas and Ohio, the Texas’ idler barge, GL-141, the tug Richard M. Lowry, and the work boats Hoosier State and Wolverine State for transport to Bahrain. (See Cover)

The loadout team experienced what amounted to a “dry run” on the first day, when wind gusts exceeding twenty knots prompted a day’s delay. The next day mild breezes and comfortable working temperatures were the order of the day.

Loading the vessels took less than three hours, excluding ballasting time of about 90 minutes on each end of the process.

The Tai An Kou departed Freeport on February 11 for the 8800-nautical-mile voyage, and after traffic delays at the Suez Canal, their estimated arrival in Bahrain was set for March 15.

Prepared with materials provided by Kevin Mackay and Tim Burke.

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