What is the concept of dry docks?

Vanitha Kolhapuri, Pune

Dry docks are a necessary adjunct to containerisation. Containerisation reduces congestion in ports and saves a lot of labour cost as well at ports. It reduces turnaround time . But carriers have to be designed in such a way that a container can be docked to it conveniently.

The idea of containerisation in turn spawned the idea of dry docks. Landlocked regions such as Haryana and Delhi do not have to worry about the distance from the nearest sea port because now there are dry docks or customs stations where one can deposit goods having a foreign destination i.e. meant for exports and obtain Customs clearance. This not only decongests our ports but also decentralises the Customs operations. In Delhi, the Pragati Maidan and Tuglakabad container stations are very active. The Indian Railways took the initiative in popularising containerisation by offering to dock containers with its goods trains. Containers are first docked into goods trains and later into cargo vessels. Containerisation also can be useful while importing because the imported goods can be sent from the sea ports to dry docks where they can be taken delivery of.

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(This article was published on April 17, 2011)
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