Cargo lightering partially resumes at Ctg port

Our Correspondent | Wednesday, 13 June 2018

CHATTOGRAM, June 12: Lightering of cargoes from mother vessels partially resumed at the outer anchorage of the Chittagong Port on Tuesday.
Some lightering vessels set sail for the deep sea area to unload cargoes from big vessels at the outer anchorage on the day.
It was stated by the executive director of Water Transport Cell, a body of lighterage vessel owners at Chattogram.
The sky was cloudy, but there was no rain, he added.
He said they had as many as 180 vessels booked for lightering of cargoes from mother vessels.
But all of them did not dare to sail for the deep sea area due to the bad weather.
Lightering of bulk cargoes had remained suspended since Sunday night due to the inclement weather at the port's outer anchorage.
As a result, mother vessels were lying idle with import cargoes.
The Met office at Patenga in the city said on Monday they recorded 239.8mm rainfall in 24 hours until 12:00 noon.
It forecast that the sky would remain cloudy until Thursday and rain might occur in different parts of the country including Chattogram.
Officials at the Water Transport Cell said they barred lightering vessels from going out in the sea for unloading cargoes from big ships due to the high tide and drizzle since Sunday evening.
Low-lying areas in the city went under knee-deep to waist-deep water, causing immense sufferings to the city people.
Some houses and shops at Prabartak, Muradpur, Bahaddarhat, Bakolia, Chawkbazar, Sholashahar Rail Gate-2, Halishahar and Agrabad reportedly went under water.
City dwellers also suffered a lot due to waterlogging.
Sources at the WTC said they released only one lightering vessel for unloading scraps from a mother vessel at the outer anchorage on Sunday.
But no lighter ship was allowed to sail for the deep sea area due to the inclement weather.
The tide was so strong in the sea that the lightering vessels would not be able to operate besides big vessels, they said.
Joint Secretary of Water Transport Cell Ataul Kabir said no lighter vessel was sent to the outer anchorage.
Port sources said some 50 mother vessels were sitting idle at the outer anchorage, but these vessels could not discharge cargo due to foul weather in the sea.
Mother vessels laden with different kinds of foodstuffs, cement clinkers, stone, fertilisers and other imported goods were waiting at the outer anchorage, sources said.
Secretary of Chittagong Port Authority Omar Faruq said on Monday lightering of cargoes remained suspended at the outer anchorage.
But container handling at the port jetties and New Mooring Container Terminal and Chittagong Container Terminal was going on at intervals and the pace of work was somewhat slow.
The work was going on at 22 ships anchored at the main berths, specialised berths and river moorings, sources said.