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BLOK Container Systems is unveiling a comprehensive range of equipment for multiple handling at TOC Europe 2019.The range is designed to deliver and maintain the benefits of faster loading and unloading throughout the handling process by saving time, equipment and emissions. The product range includes: BLOK Spreaders, BLOK Trailers, BLOK Rigs and BLOK Cert, a certification system for Vertical Tandem Lifting. 
BLOK Spreaders are autonomous, lightweight adaptors for single or twin lift STS spreaders that facilitate lifting two containers side by side, Horizontal Tandem Lifting (HTL) or four containers in two columns of Vertical Tandem Lift (VTL). The electro-hydraulic spreaders fit and remove in seconds, are cell guide and hatch cover compatible and have an infinitely adjustable tandem separating distance up to 1600mm which is compatible for use with straddle carriers. 
BLOK Trailers are double width Trailers which allow a single tug tractor to transport up to 8 teu ant once for efficient transfer of containers around the quayside. The BLOK Trailer is perfectly suited to tandem lifting operations since it receives and feeds containers in perfect alignment for the lift and allows maximum efficiency for STS cranes. 
BLOK Rigs are semi-automatic lashing platforms for safe and efficient fitting and removal of twistlocks (SATs). BLOK Rigs can be deployed under the STS crane or elsewhere on in the yard and can be used for building up VTL units. With BLOK Cert, BLOK Rigs can be used for proof testing VTL units. BLOK Rigs, when used with BLOK Spreaders and BLOK Trailers can increase container handling speed by up to four times.. 
BLOK Cert is a patent applied for system for certifying that a pair of empty containers together with their four SAT twistlocks can be lifted in Vertical Tandem Lift (VTL) by STS cranes safely. Once provided the BLOK Cert is held on the Shipping Line Stowage System and the receiving port Terminal Operating System so that empty containers can be safely and confidently lifted in VTL in the knowledge that they have been proof tested, inspected and certified for safe operation. 
We are pioneering new multiple container handling systems which are the key to faster processes and reduced emissions. 
Our purpose is to make a major contribution to improving the productivity of container terminals and shipping lines resulting in: 
 Faster vessel turn around 
 Empty and laden containers managed more efficiently 
 Reduced vehicle and crane movements 
 Lower emissions and increased sustainability 
 Improved safety on the quayside 
Work with us and we can help you take containerisation to the next level. 
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A ground-breaking piece of equipment which could save the maritime industry billions of dollars is being launched by a BLOK Container Systems. 
BLOK Container Systems’ new BLOK Spreader enables four empty shipping containers to be lifted and transported on to quaysides as a single block, potentially easing congestion in container ports all over the world, as well as reducing emissions and saving billions across the industry... 
It was excellent to have the opportunity this week to make a presentation at the International Maritime Organisation, the specialist agency of the United Nations, responsible for the regulation of shipping. 
The opportunity was facilitated by The International Cargo Handling Co-ordination Association (ICHCA) which has been extremely supportive and has already publicised the activities of the Coventry University and BLOK Container Systems research team. 
The presentation was the culmination of a three month BLOK Container Systems research project in association with Coventry University, looking at how initiatives to handle shipping containers in ports more quickly and efficiently can make a major contribution to reducing emissions globally. 
With the news that IMO has set a target of halving shipping carbon emissions by 2050, the heat is on everyone in the chain to do more to make the process of international trade cleaner. 
It is inevitable that the pressure for ports to up their game in reducing emissions and energy use will also continue to intensify. 
Listening to the discussions at an ICHCA seminar at The Hague last week (hosted by APM Terminals) it is clear that the significant pressure on ports to become greener is not just coming from lobbyists and industry opinion formers. 
Influential pressure is coming from customers needing to support their own consumer propositions with a reduced carbon footprint. Massive players such as Google, Amazon and Apple are setting the agenda by influencing their whole supply chain to meet green targets. 
Such issues obviously have the attention of forward-looking terminal operators and this will gain further impetus when the choice of terminal starts to be based on the ability to meet this customer need. 
BLOK Container Systems is clearly aware of these industry drivers and has created a fundamentally more efficient, cleaner and safer method of container handling. 
Supermarkets have for a long time demonstrated that containers such as beer cans are much easier to handle in multipacks so the question is why are most shipping containers still handled singly? 
Trailers initially conceived for BLOKs of 4 or 8 empty containers may now be the key to the quicker use of tandem lift spreaders moving laden containers at terminals around the world. 
The combination will be of great assistance to terminals faced with the challenge of loading and unloading bigger ships faster and more efficiently, said Selwyn Rowley of Director of Sales and Marketing for Blok Container Systems. 
Use of the BLOK Trailer overcomes several current issues for terminals seeking the efficiencies promised by equipment that can lift multiple laden and empty containers but then has to use up valuable time trying to align the load with individual container trailers. In November last year at the QSOE demonstration of the BLOK Container System, Hutchison told us that their Tandem Lift spreaders do not gain the time savings they should because of inaccurate trailer alignment, which the BLOK Trailer will now overcome. 
The new system also helps to address safety concerns. If the laden containers or indeed empty containers have come from the deck, then they will also have projecting down from their bottom castings , four twistlocks each which are currently often removed manually whilst the crane dangles the containers in the air. 
The BLOK Trailers transport laden containers in accurate alignment with the crane so that the tandem lift spreaders can pick them up quickly or lower them down quickly on to the trailer together. 
No twistlock feeders are needed on the quay or indeed at all because the BLOK Trailer includes twistlock feeding at each container casting position. The twistlocks are pre-fitted or removed off quay making the operation safer and quicker. Then there is the potential to lower a second couple of containers onto the trailer so that four, laden 40fts or 8 laden 20fts can be transported along the quay with one tractor unit. Empty or laden containers can be mixed with the laden containers on the lower level. After off- loading one pair of containers the trailers can be driven along the quay to a second crane for loading the second pair. 
The new trailers are patent applied for and currently under construction and trials at Singamas QSOE in Shanghai, China and will be available to purchase later this year. 
BLOK Container Systems is sponsoring TECH TOC as it seeks to bring efficiency solutions to terminals and shipping lines around the world. 
If you want to hear about ideas being developed to improve port productivity and achieve operational excellence you should come and see us on the opening day of TOC Europe, Amsterdam June 27th, Tuesday afternoon at 12.15pm to 2.15pm 
In addition to our innovative system for handling empty containers which alone could save the industry $1.5 billion, we offer great potential for partnership with tandem lifting equipment suppliers for speeding the process of unloading and loading full containers using innovative trailers and twistlock developments, which could be an industry game changer and speed up universal acceptance of multiple container unloading and loading. 
We will be teasing some of the innovative solutions we have in the pipeline, in the run up to TECH TOC and will be very happy to receive contacts from spreader and twistlock manufacturers who would like further insight into the possibilities we are creating and may be interested in partnering. Likewise, we will be very pleased to talk to terminal operators and shipping lines that may be experiencing problematic peaks and troughs, or disappointing terminal turnaround times that our innovations could help solve. Finally, we would be interested to talk to developers of new ports or terminals, as planning with some of our innovations in mind will result in world leading implementation and considerable competitive advantage over existing systems
The new container handling system to be launched at TOC Europe in June will dramatically improve the efficiency of terminals when handling empty freight ISO containers and has considerable safety benefits. 
“By deploying BLOKs the whole container handling system can be speeded up dramatically using existing cranes and terminal infrastructure,” says Selwyn Rowley, head of sales and marketing for BLOK-Container Systems. 
It is possible to raise lifting rates from a present average of 30 containers per hour, to between 120 and 240 per hour, a massive increase in productivity. 
The BLOK Container System works like this. Containers are formed into blocks (‘BLOKs’) before the ship arrives during normal working hours. BLOK-Locks work alongside SATs to pre-lash the containers together in one secure BLOK ready for shipping. The BLOKs are then transported to the quay and craned onto the ship in BLOKs of four, six or eight containers. 
The BLOKs are assembled two containers high ‘off quay’ by teams of stevedores using a special self-jigging trailer called a BLOK Trailer. The BLOK Trailer once loaded, is towed to the quayside by just one driver, one tractor ready for lifting. 
A BLOK-Spreader is available which for a four BLOK System enables tandem spreaders to lift three or four columns of containers, a twin lift spreader to lift up eight teu, and a single spreader to lift four 20 foots or four 40 foots at a time. 
The BLOK Container System will increase productivity by multiples of four, six or eight times. BLOKs can be assembled ahead of time, providing a balanced work load which allows stevedores to work easily and safely during normal working hours. 
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