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Crane Provides Key to Quayside Fish Handling

Crane Provides Key to Quayside Fish Handling

When Sutton Harbour Fisheries needed an alternative method of handling fish boxes from boats to the quayside while its normal facilities were out of action due to scheduled harbour maintenance in 2007 it found a vehicle mounted crane supplied by Penny Hydraulics offered an ideal solution. Installing a Penny Hydraulics Swing Lift crane on a new pickup truck provided a highly effective, flexible and mobile solution to the company’s requirements.

“We are very pleased with the crane and it’s been exactly what we needed,” says Pete Bromley, Harbourmaster and Fisheries Manager of Sutton Harbour Company. “Penny Hydraulics couldn’t have been more helpful. They listened to what we had to say and came up with a solution.”

Based in Plymouth, Sutton Harbour Fisheries is one of the most successful fish markets in the UK, trading millions of pounds worth of fish each year caught locally or landed at other ports throughout the country. The harbour is accessed through a lock gate which can be closed to create a haven for local boats to moor and land their catch. Sutton Harbour Fisheries normally offloads fish boxes using specialist handling equipment permanently installed at the quayside. The lock gate was scheduled for renewal during the second half of 2007 and this meant the boats would need to find an alternative position to land their catch while the work was being carried out because they would not have access to the harbour.

Sutton Harbour Fisheries recognised that it needed to find an effective temporary method for landing the local catch safely and efficiently so that the fishermen’s livelihoods would not be affected. A permanent location was considered impractical and instead the company came up with the idea of a crane mounted on a vehicle that could drive to any position along the quayside and lift fish boxes from the boats and take them to the market. Pete Bromley made contact with Penny Hydraulics which proposed one of its Swing Lift cranes with an integrated electric winch for handling loads below quay level. The crane was installed to the manufacturer’s specification at the rear of a new Iveco extended flatbed pickup by a local specialist marine engineer.

“We ordered the crane and it was delivered to us ready for fitting,” says Pete Bromley. “The engineers fitted and tested it for us. It was one of the easiest jobs I’ve ever put together.”

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