Vanguard complete specialist lifting operation to upright EUROPA vessel.

Vanguard have successfully completed a complex lifting operation to upright a barque rigged sailing vessel, named the EUROPA, at Victoria and Alfred Waterfront Yard, Cape Town. The vessel, which weighs 650t and measures 44.5m in length, recently slipped from its keel supports and rolled onto its starboard side during relaunching operations.

Vanguard were contracted to engineer and perform an up-righting operation to realign the vessel with the centre line of the track system. A crane lift was not possible, due to the restricted workable space surrounding the vessel, therefore Vanguard’s engineering team designed a bespoke lifting solution.

The solution comprised of four hydraulic gantry systems, which were positioned over the vessel and between the masts to minimise further impact to the masts and rigging. Once the 400t and 600t capacity systems were in place at the bow and 500t capacity systems positioned at the stern, the header beams were lifted into position and four 186t capacity strand jacks were installed.

The strand jack system, which was rigged to keel brackets that had been custom fabricated for the operation, provided a high degree of accuracy and enabled the Vanguard team to lift and upright the vessel in a controlled and precise manner. Once the vertical lift had been completed, Vanguard completed a transverse skidding operation to realign the vessel with the track system. “Vanguard were delighted to work for Resolve Marine and alongside Trinity Marine Architects on this unique project. The extensive planning and engineering work that was involved is evident in the precision of the execution,” commented Bryan Hodgkinson, Director at Vanguard.

“It was a true team effort and the success of the project is testament to the knowledge and experience within the business”.

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