JUNE 1, 2012 — Gibraltar-based ship repairer Gibdock has been seeing a high volume of workflow from the containership market. The latest German owner to select the shipyard for containership work is Reederei Hans Peterson & Sohne whose 188 m long, 1997-built Westerburg operates in the Mediterranean and West African trades, making Gibdock an attractive repair location. The 2,064 TEU vessel spent 11 days at the shipyard towards the end of April, undergoing an extensive package of work before on-time redelivery.
So far in 2012 Gibdock has either carried out, or received firm contracts for, four containerships, compared with five in the whole of 2011.
Richard Beards, Gibdock Commercial Director, says: "Clearly, owners and operators need to be assured of the quality of work we deliver, but for time-pressured containerships, it's fair to say that they think 'location, location, location' first. The Hanjin and Maersk terminals are close by in Algeciras at one of the Mediterranean's busiest container ports, while the fast growing Tanger Med Terminal is just across the Strait. Vessels can call here with practically zero deviation, allowing them to remain on scheduled runs without costly diversions."
During the docking Westerburg underwent repair works on the rudder and propeller and a modification of the net catching device at the vessel's propeller shaft. Other work included renewing the stern seals; fitting an owner-supplied anchor and chain, renewing seven cell guides; and blasting and painting of vertical and top sides to provide 5-year protection.
A total of 25 hatch covers were also landed ashore during the docking and Gibdock was tasked with refurbishing and repairing these units. This required straightening and inserting flat bars into the coamings; inserting new steel to the corners of the hatches; renewing 700 m of rubber packing, as well as the omega seals and landing pads; and repairs to the hatch cover cleats.