Ship Hits Fremantle Bridge in Storm
after two cargo ships break away from their moorings
Fremantle Ports in Australia has begun an investigation into an incident in which two cargo ships broke away from their moorings in the inner harbor. A severe wind squall with gusts up to 110 kms an hour came through about 10 p.m. on August 17th as stevedoring operations on the two ships were in progress.
The vessels, a general cargo ship (AAL Fremantle) and a car carrier (Grand Pioneer), were at North Quay berths 11 and 12 at the eastern end of the port.
Although the mooring lines at the bow of the ships held good, the ships swung out at the stern.
The stern of AAL Fremantle came in contact with scaffolding on the Fremantle Rail Bridge and one of the power poles on the bridge subsequently fell into the harbor.
The loss of power for the trains has halted passenger rail services between Fremantle and North Fremantle and is also impacting on freight rail services in and out of the port. It is not known at this stage how long the services will be interrupted.
The incident was dealt with immediately and the two ships involved were returned safely to their berths in the early hours of this morning.
Fremantle Ports has begun an immediate investigation into engineering and other aspects of the shipping incident.
The extent of the rail bridge damage is being assessed by the Public Transport Authority.