Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals (Hactl) is to establish a new aero engine handling centre, with the aim of increasing Hong Kong’s involvement in the movement of aero engines.
Hactl noted that Hong Kong is one of only two locations in Asia which has certified repair, modification and overhaul facilities for Rolls-Royce Trent engines, used in the Airbus A330, A340, A350 and A380, as well as the Boeing 777 and 787 Dreamliner.
Hactl believes that, with enhanced facilities and streamlined procedures, it can help to attract more aero engine traffic to and through Hong Kong. The company currently handles an average of two aero engine units per day; and the new facility will complement this existing ability to process aircraft engines.
An additional, dedicated outsize weigh-scale has been installed to facilitate double-checking of shipment weights. Enhanced aero engine handling procedures have also been drawn up, including the imposition of a 5kph towing speed limit. All engine ground movements will now take place in convoy with pilot cars front and back. A new, fast-track route has been introduced to reduce towing distances, clearly marked with height restrictions to prevent collision with overhead obstacles. Only the most experienced of Hactl’s tractor drivers will be entrusted with the towing of aero engines.
Hactl is training additional staff and is forming a dedicated aero engine handling team.
“Aero engines are very large and heavy, but also delicate and among the most valuable commodities we process. We are upgrading all aspects of our handling to ensure we continue to provide the ultimate in efficient and safe handling, while paving the way for potential future growth,” said Hactl general manager – service delivery Paul Cheng.
“By enhancing Hactl’s capabilities for handling this highly specialised and challenging cargo, we aim to enhance Hong Kong’s reputation as an important link in the global aero engine maintenance and repair network. This should attract additional aero engine business to Hong Kong and Hactl, and benefit our airport community, airline customers and service partners.”