IFLN News 2019
City Union Logistics Handles the Pressure
City Union Logistics, cargo on crane
Shanghai-headquartered IFLN Network member City Union Logistics has been busy. Amongst the many transports it has handled for various customers, two of late have been particularly notable.
One saw City Union move a total of 805 tons of freight across a number of different shipments from Changshu in Jiangsu province, China, to Haiphong in Vietnam. The consignee was buying a furnace from a supplier in China and the supplier is a regular client of City Union’s.
Having such a good relationship with the IFLN member forwarder, it recommended City Union to the consignee and it was taken on to handle the complex transport.
The cargo had a total volume of 3,402 cubic meters, while the largest single piece weighed in at 38 tons, confirms Tina Lin, vice general manager (overseas business/project/air freight) at City Union.
The freight consisted of wound coil and tubing, as well as a milling machine, rolling mill and spinner block machine.
The cargo needed to be picked up from a factory in Changshu and moved to the port of Haiphong, before being transported to its final destination: a newly built factory in the north-eastern Vietnamese city. While the timescale wasn’t all that short, it was precisely defined – the freight had to be delivered not earlier and not later than specific dates.
Moreover: “In order to minimize the cost for the client, as well as match the needs of new factory construction plan, we split the shipments into three batches and used both a container vessel breakbulk,” Lin informs.
The three shipments were made across two weeks of October this year and despite typhoons affecting sailing schedules, all problems were overcome and the cargo was safely handed over. The client was more than happy, providing further evidence of City Union’s professionalism and ability when it comes to big project shipments.
City Union Logistics, crane shipment on low loader
The second job saw City Union move a large crane destined for a geared vessel from Jingjiang in Jiangsu province to Singapore in September.
The cargo of 132 tons and 668 cubic meters was moved by sea to Singapore, but that was only the latest stage of a phased process that had previously seen City Union pick up the crane up from a Jingjiang shipyard and transport it to the port terminal, as well as oversee the subsequent terminal handling, loading on board the ocean-going vessel and arrange Customs clearance.
Even after the crane’s disassembly, the out-of-gauge consignment took some handling. Its pedestal weighed in at 14.5 tons, the column at 38.5 tones, its frame at 28.5 tons and its boom weighed 45 tons.
The crane was returning to Singapore and had been stored for some years in the outside air. Most of the wooden cases were damp and mildewed, Lin recalls, with the bottoms of the wooden case already covered by moss.
To make matters worse, the ‘shipper’ was a trading agent, with the real shipper not based in China. And the crane had been stored in a shipyard that didn’t belong to the real shipper. “We only had two days to get everything prepared and ready to catch the sea-going ship,” Lin says.
And in just that short time, City Union had to co-ordinate with the shipyard on the pick-up of the cargo and its delivery by five low-bed trucks to the terminal; ensure that the lifting point and G centre marks designed by the forwarder had been clearly marked on each case; that all packaging had been appropriately reinforced and lashed safely; all the cases had been deep-cleaned; and that Customs had given clearance for release.
And all that involved co-ordination with a number of different partied. “We overcame all sorts of strange and sudden problems, says Lin, “but we did it,” through effective communication, flexibility and ability.
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