Transnet is investigating methods to deal with unpredictable and severe weather patterns, which have affected the railway network during and after cyclone Eloise, which hit Southern Africa in late January, resulting in heavy and persistent rainfall across South Africa.
Transnet Freight Rail (TFR), in particular, experienced disruptions over the past weeks, as a result of severe damage caused by excessive rain following cyclone Eloise. The rain caused unusual disruptions on the heavy-haul lines, including the iron-ore and the manganese channel, leading to a number of wash-away incidents that can cause derailments or serious accidents.
Following several wash-away incidents, TFR has had to shut down a number of railway lines to repair and replace culverts that are used to facilitate the channelling of water in one direction. Such unplanned train stoppages result in financial losses and negatively affect Transnet customers.
Transnet is implementing methods to deal with such incidents as part of its efforts to improve the reliability of its delivery of freight for customers. Increased changes and unpredictability in weather patterns mean that improved measures need to be implemented to avoid damage to the railway network and port infrastructure, in future.
As part of preventive measures, TFR will conduct topography and hydrological surveys in all areas susceptible to heavy rains, the outcomes of which will be incorporated into the shutdowns that occur yearly.
TFR also carries out inspections governed by the manual for infrastructure condition assessments. This occurs at least twice a year before winter and summer and ensures that the culverts are cleaned of any debris, vegetation and blockages before heavy rains.
Logistics Going Green
A logistics start-up has launched eco-friendly packaging that allows online retailers to minimize their impact on the environment with last-mile deliveries. The new packaging will offer the same quality, durability, and security everyone has come to expect with an added benefit of leaving minimal impact on the environment.
In South Africa alone, billions of plastic bags are discarded every year. Clinging to trees, spreading across fences, and filling up gutters. Sadly, the logistics industry also contributes to this single-use plastic wastefulness.
Many single-use plastic items are only used for a few minutes and outlive their users for hundreds of years. Being industry disruptors within the logistics field, the logistics start-up has the privilege to address this pressing concern and pilot their new sustainable paper packaging range, which includes mailing bags, envelopes and packaging tape ensuring tough tamperproof and trusted products.
There is no denying it anymore, single-use plastic is not sustainable. By adding this paper packaging option to last-mile delivery every fulfilment strategy can be environmentally sustainable and change the logistics industry altogether.
Abu Qir Port Project Contract Awarded to DEME
DEME, the dredging, offshore, environmental, and infrastructure service specialists, announced that at the end of last year it secured a large dredging contract for the Abu Qir port project in Egypt.
Described as the largest ever dredging and land reclamation contract in history, the project includes the reclamation of 1 000ha of new land, the deepening of the port’s approach channel to 23m and the dredging of a turning basin to 22m. More than 150-million cubic metres will be dredged.
This ambitious megaproject creates land for the expansion and further development of Abu Qir, which boasts an ancient history and is slated to become a bustling economic hub, supplementing nearby Alexandria, in Egypt.
DEME will deploy the world’s most powerful CSD (Cutter Suction Dredger) ‘Spartacus’ on the project.
The project’s preparation has already started, with the main works set to commence in early 2021. The project is set for completion in 2023.
“We are very proud to have secured our largest ever dredging and land reclamation contract to date, and to support the Arab Republic of Egypt in its ambitions to develop a world-class project,” says DEME CEO Luc Vandenbulcke.
Convergence Partners acquire CTrack
Technology investor Convergence Partners has entered into an agreement with Inseego to acquire 100% of Ctrack’s operations in Africa and the Middle East.
The transaction will be the maiden investment for its third fund, the Convergence Partners Digital Infrastructure Fund (CPDIF).
Ctrack is a telematics software-as-a-service digital infrastructure platform, providing fleet management, insurance and weather telematics solutions, as well as asset tracking products, to its subscribers in Africa and the Middle East.
Convergence Partners says the business’s Internet-of-Things (IoT) and data analytics capabilities are a key component of an emerging sector in Africa and the company is a good fit with CPDIF’s strategy of identifying high-growth market players that build digital infrastructure on the continent.