ASTRAKHAN, Russia – Blue Water Shipping is close to completing the delivery of a newbuild jackup to Eurasia Drilling Co. via Russia’s Volga-Don river system.
The rig has to be delivered in consignments for subsequent re-assembly and use in the Caspian Sea. The width of the packages is up to 17.35 m (57 ft), and one item shipped weighed 1,050 metric tons (1,157 tons).
Blue Water is using four river barges to transport the Le Tourneau S116 (E) jackup from Mariupol to a shipyard in Astrakhan on the northern Caspian coast.
Lamprell built the rig at its Hamriyah facility in Sharjah, UAE. Due to width constraints associated with the river system, the jackup had to be separated into smaller sections. These are being delivered via three heavy-lift shipments from Hamriyah to Mariupol, and from there to Astrakhan.
Loading of the first 34,000-cu m (1.2-MMcf) consignment was completed in March in Hamriyah. Once loaded, the vessel departed for the 14-day journey to Mariupol, followed by transshipment to Astrakhan.
A Blue Water team of port captains, stevedores, naval architects, and project forwarders supervised the operation with assistance from the port and local authorities in Mariupol. After less than nine days, all cargo was transshipped ready for the 1,240-km (770-mi) voyage through the Russian river system and its 19 locks.
A second shipment followed, and the third consignment is due to arrive in Mariupol in late June.
“With this project, we are the first-ever company to transport items with a width of 17.36 cm, allowing a clearance of only a few centimeters on either side when passing the locks,” said Kim Beier, HSEQ manager at Blue Water Shipping.