deugro chartered nine flights to transport 37 pipe spools urgently between Thailand and the US for a new facility startup.
The cargo, totalling 213 tons (1,628 cubic meters), required road transportation at both ends of the journey.
deugro said its scope of work encompassed the multi-modal door-to-door transportation by various aircraft types and truck–trailer configurations from a production facility in the Rayong Province of Thailand before being flown from U-Tapao Airport to George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston.
deugro said normally, such cargo would be shipped by ocean freight or via expedited direct charter ocean freight, but in urgent cases, only the mode of transportation via air freight could meet the date needed for the cargo to be on site.
The transport also met several challenges.
"With scarce capacities on the heavy lift air charter market caused by the war in Ukraine, the biggest challenge was locating and securing aircraft that could not only be available at the right place at the right time but which also allowed for loading the oversized equipment with extremely odd dimensions and complex shapes, with lengths of up to 36.6 meters, widths of up to 5.5 meters and heights of up to 4.4 meters," said Pavel Kuznetsov, head of air chartering, deugro.
"At the same time, the cargo's requirements had to match the varying available aircraft types, loading equipment and airport capacities."
For this purpose, he noted that deugro provided tailored packaging solutions, designed various safe and efficient loading concepts and sourced additional loading equipment.
Besides the critical transportation of the cargo by aircraft, a variety of further preparations was essential to ensure the timely and smooth deliveries of the replacement components from the factory in Thailand to the US.
This applied in particular to the extra-long spools with lengths of more than 36 meters, which, together with the truck–trailer configurations used, resulted in total lengths of up to over 45 meters.
To safely move and load these oversized components, appropriate loading and transport equipment had to be sourced and mobilized. This included 80-metric-ton mobile cranes, main-deck loaders and various truck–trailer configurations.
"To transport all components to U-Tapao airport according to schedule, and to ensure on-time loading of each aircraft and avoid delays, precise planning and preparation were essential," said Kumphol Chatthong, deputy general manager, deugro Thailand.
"These included detailed road surveys and obstacle removals, timely organization of all required permits, including gate passes and appropriate approvals for smooth entry of cargo, cranes and trailers into the airport, as well as the organization of police escorts."