Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited (Hactl), has handled two charter flights for its customer AirBridgeCargo Airlines, each carrying 65ft 6in (20m)-long machinery components weighing 41,447lbs (18,800kg).
The outsize loads were carried on two of the airline’s brand-new B747-8 freighters from Schiphol, Netherlands, to Hong Kong; their final destination was Guangzhou on the Chinese mainland.
Due to their length, the machinery components were secured to customized built up pallets and had to be unloaded through the aircrafts’ nose doors. Unable to use cranes due to local regulations, Hactl deployed four main-deck loaders, which had to be lowered in perfect alignment to avoid any damage to the cargo.
Manoeuvring the unloaded cargo from aircraft side to the cargo terminal presented a further major challenge; traffic on the ramp road was temporarily re-routed, and a direct path to the terminal was cordoned off, to provide a straight journey without any sharp turns.