April 1977 - Maritime Reporter and Engineering News

North America-Mideast Trade To Get Largest Ro/Ro Ships In New Seaspeed Service This Month

The largest capacity roll-on/ roll-off vessels in the world, with the ability to carry single units of cargo weighing up to 1,000 metric tons, will be introduced into the North America-Middle East trade by Seaspeed Services by the end of this month.

The Seaspeed Arabia, first of three 21,700-deadweight-ton vessels designed and built for Seaspeed Services especially for this trade, will commence service from the Virginia port of Portsmouth and will call at the Middle East ports of Dammam, Dubai, Bandar Shahpour, and—in a later sailing —Jeddah.

Seaspeed Services is already the largest carrier from Northern Europe to the Middle East and operates a fleet of roll-on/roll-off ships.

"This is the service that shippers of all types of cargo to the Middle East need. From the largest to the smallest piece of freight, on wheels and in containers, palletized or heavy lift, these ships can do it all," said Robert W. Brown, marketing and sales manager for Seaspeed in London, England.

Hansen and Tidemann, Inc.

have been named U.S. agents for this innovative service. Hinkins Steamship Agency of Norfolk, Va., have been appointed port agents.

The Seaspeed ships were designed and built to offer North American exporters to the Middle East these services: • Maximum cargo flexibility.

The ships can accept any class of cargo and can do the work of virtually any other general cargo ships.

• Quicker turnaround in port.

The stern ramp load/discharge, built by MacGregor Far East, allows the vessel to occupy only 150 feet of berthing space — a major consideration in the congested Mideast ports. A fully loaded vessel can be discharged in six hours by a crew of only 25 people.

• Maximum cargo space. The ships have no interior ramps, thereby allowing all deck space to be used for cargo stowage.

Cargo moves to the appropriate deck on a stern-ramp lift. The ships are equipped with 80-ton elevators for moving between decks.

• Largest interior height capacity.

The vessels have three interior decks with a capacity of handling freight up to 23 feet high.

• Elimination of cargo damage.

Through the use of special stabilizers, the potential ship roll of 25 degrees has been reduced to three degrees. Condensation damage is eliminated by a forced ventilation system of 20 to 40 air changes per hour.

• Seaspeed backup services. To ensure proper control of cargo to and from its final destination, the line's facilities include its own trucking and feeder services at Mideast ports, as well as Seaspeed's own E u r o p e a n - s t a f f e d stevedores.

• Total service in North America.

With more than 40 years of service to the transportation industry, the 15 Hansen and Tidemann, Inc. offices throughout the United States will put Seaspeed Services at the disposal of every shipper.

The ships, built at Kawasaki Heavy Industries of Japan, are some 650 feet long and 107 feet in width.

The Seaspeed Arabia will sail from Portsmouth Marine Terminal on April 28. The Seaspeed Asia will have its maiden voyage in June. The third ship will begin operating during the summer.

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