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Craig Hutchinson, Innovative Corrosion Management Pty Ltd
Dario Vallini, Fremantle Ports
In May 1897 Fremantle Ports’ Inner Harbour was officially opened bringing increased trade into Western Australia. One hundred and fourteen years later in 2011, the Port saw 26 million mass tonnes of trade pass through its facilities at a value greater than $25 billion.
Fremantle Ports is a harbour seemingly forever in expansion. With imports and exports increasing, 2011 alone saw Fremantle receive 1952 shipping visits. Vessel capability and size is increasing and capacity for container storage is at a premium. To ensure the Ports can meet the requirement to handle larger vessels, receive the increased container throughput and store the additional containers, means a continual improvement to Port facilities.
In 2009/10, Fremantle deepened the Inner Harbour and Entrance Channel to 14.7 metres and the Deepwater Channel to 16.5 metres, allowing larger vessels to enter the port fully loaded. The project also involved strengthening of the North Quay container berths to cater for the heavier loads the bigger ships impose on wharf infrastructure.