Arrival at the port of Brisbane: manufactured in Vienna, the trams were shipped over a distance of more than 14,000 nautical miles to Australia – as single pieces
Photos: DB Schenker
They are the pack horses – and in some sense also the Trojan horses – of the globalized automobile industry: the roll-on roll-off vessels. Every year many millions of vehicles are driven onto these giants and shipped off to destinations around the world. During the fall of this year, DB Schenker twice used one of these “tubs” to transport some highly unusual vehicles from Europe to Brisbane in Australia: four trams measuring 43.3 meters in length. Never before had rolling stock of such dimensions been shipped as a single piece on a roll-on roll-off vessel.
DB Schenker’s project team in charge of the operation gave preference to the Trojan horse over a lift-on/lift-off break bulk vessel in order to minimize the risk of damage occurring during loading. The four trams will be deployed in the city of Gold Coast where the 2018 Commonwealth Games will be hosted – where DB Schenker will also be present as the Official Logistics Supplier. One special feature of this model is that it is the world’s first trams designed and built to carry surfboards on custom racks. Surf-on surf-off, you could say.