Heavy-duty transport of engines of this size is not easy under normal
circumstances, but in this particular case the complexity was even greater.
"We had to divide the transport into four different stages. The
preparation of each phase was complicated, but in the end it was worth
it," says Isabel Bascones, ES-E project manager, looking back with relief.
The first step was the loading of the engines: the cargo ship, which
arrived in Puerto Cortés (Honduras) late in the evening from Saint-Nazaire in
France, handed over its cargo to an inland waterway vessel. This was followed
by transport from the naval port to an intermediate storage facility at the
Medina shipyard - a distance of just a few kilometres for which the first
engine took two days. "We learned from the challenges and were able to
shorten the time for the other two engines to just one day," says
From the Medina shipyard the journey led to another interim storage
facility near the Choloma Cortes site. These about 50 kilometres constituted
the longest part of the route, seven days were the three 18V51/60 engines in
total on the road. Bascones was confronted with a variety of challenges:
"The high volume of traffic, low overhead power lines and above all the
Choloma bridge. To distribute the load better, we had to use a very large
transport solution. We used two trailers with a total length of about 75 meters
for the crossing and even added some wheels just before the bridge."
And it was not only the geographical conditions that put the transport
to the test: "We were also held up by public demonstrations and unrest,
which Honduras has suffered in recent months," explains Bascones. This
delayed the trip by more than two weeks.
The last leg of the journey took us from the Choloma shipyard to the
Choloma Cortes site. The transport took a total of 69 days - until the last
engine found its place on the foundation of the power plant in Choloma Cortes
on 18 July.
Isabel Bascones has a lot of experience as a project manager, but when
the engines finally arrived at their destination, she was also relieved:
"The transport is only part of the whole project - but it is always
critical and risky, because you never know what to expect on site. The
organization is interesting, but demanding. I've already taken part in various
transports like this one. Each one is different and has its own special
characteristics. Of course,
I'm always relieved when everything went well."
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