July 2010
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TLCPA and CSX Celebration

On June 17, 2010, the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority dedicated and named two new Liebherr Mobile Harbor Cranes today in a joint ceremony with CSX at the Toledo Maritime Center. 

The Liebherr LHM 280 cranes arrived at Midwest Terminals of Toledo, from Austria, on May 17,  2010 aboard the M/V Serena. Funding for the purchase of the cranes came from American Recovery and Reinvestment Act resources, administered by the Ohio Department of Transportation.

“This investment in a port facility is a unique venture for the Ohio Department of Transportation,” says Paul L. Toth, President and CEO of the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority. “Roads and bridges are certainly important, but investments such as these in multi-modal port facilities have an exponential economic impact in terms of employment and commerce.”

The new cranes are twice as productive as current equipment and will be used to handle bulk, break bulk, project cargo and containers. These cranes will modernize material handling capabilities at the Port of Toledo and are the only twin cranes of this type in operation at any U.S. Great Lakes Port. The cranes are also more fuel-efficient, using only 25% of the fuel expended by the existing cranes.

Though regular container service does not currently exist in any port on the Great Lakes, the cranes were selected due to their ability to handle diverse types of cargo including containers.  “We are working on developing container services to the gateway ports of Eastern Canada, either by handi-size vessels or barges. These cranes will put Toledo in a good position to handle container trade,” says Joe Cappel, Director of Cargo Development for the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority.

The new Liebherr Mobile Harbor Cranes replace two pre-World War II era rail-based cranes. Unlike the rail based cranes that will be decommissioned, the new cranes have outstanding maneuverability due to an intricate mobility system consisting of multiple rubber tires.

Upon arrival in the Port of Toledo in May, the cranes were assembled over the course of a month by two engineers from Liebherr. The cranes can be operated manually from the cab located 68 feet above ground, or from the ground via remote control.

Each crane stands more than 140 feet and weighs more than 240 tons. The total footprint is close to 1300 square feet and each crane has a reach of up to 130 feet. Maximum crane capacity is 84 tons per swing and each crane can turn up to 1000 tons per hour. Both cranes can work in tandem to increase maximum lift capacity.

The Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority held a “Name the Cranes” contest for area students, and Madison Phillips, an eight grader at Fasset Middle School submitted the winning names – “Spike” and “Muddy” named after the mascots from the Toledo Walleye Hockey team and the Toledo Mud Hens baseball team.

"Spike" and "Muddy" in action at the Port of Toledo

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