Feature, Freight News, Sea
P&O Ferries gets into container shipping[ April 18, 2017 // Chris ]
P&O Ferries is to launch a new dedicated lo lo service between Hull and Zeebrugge on 3 May.
The ferry and logistics company has chartered the 118 metre Elisabeth, a 5,000-ton container ship which will make three round-trips per week between, complementing the existing passenger and freight ro ro service.
Although ferry operators increasingly carry containers and swap bodies on ro ro services, this is the first time for many years that a UK ferry operator has operated dedicated containerships; the last such major operation was probably the then Sealink service between Holyhead and Dublin, which ended in the 1980s. It reflects P&O’s increasing diversification beyond ferries into other areas of logistics and transport, including containers and rail.
Janette Bell, Managing Director of P&O Ferries, said: “We have designed this new freight service and our timetable around the needs of our customers, who have told us that reliability and the lowest possible terminal waiting times are vital to their businesses.”
“The new service will offer fast and efficient turnaround times in both ports, with our recently expanded Zeebrugge terminal having optimised handling at our freight gate to help customers’ delivery commitments. We will carry all types of lift units on the new service including containers and swap bodies.”
She added that it would “further increase our customers’ options for the fast and reliable delivery of goods.”
P&O Ferries has enhanced rail facilities at Zeebrugge port which handle the growing proportion of its cargoes which originate in Central and Eastern Europe, along with connections to northern Spain and Gothenburg via services operated by lines in partnership with P&O Ferries. This is complemented by a rail terminal in the northern Romanian city of Oradea, which became operational last year, to facilitate the onward movement of goods to Britain from China via the New Silk Road.
Tags: Hull, P&O Ferries, Zeebrugge