La Spezia Container Terminal Improves Yard Utilization with Expert Decking

Terminal operations are made up of activity processes including scheduling, planning, monitoring and then analyzing. We can do all this thanks to the Navis software.

 - Marco Fehmer, Operations Systems Manager, La Spezia Container Terminal

Software Enables Revenue Growth by Easing Land Constraints

The biggest issues facing La Spezia Container Terminal (LSCT) are land constraints and high volume due to gate, vessels, and rail running concurrently. LSCT needs to be as efficient and productive as possible at all times to maximize their existing resources.

Prior to Navis, the yard was extremely congested, and equipment was under-utilized. Within six months of implementing Navis SPARCS, LSCT realized increased yard utilization and equipment optimization, and was able to handle more containers per hour, and jobs from different parts of the yard more efficiently. "With SPARCS, our equipment usage has increased significantly and allowed our equipment to handle more containers per hour, which has cut down on the amount of idle time as well as optimized the distance traveled by equipment," says Alessandro Becce, CEO and Managing Director at La Spezia Container Terminal. "As soon as we realized that we could handle more containers, we were able to accept additional requests from shipping lines that wanted to come to La Spezia."

TEU Capacity Increases Over 30% with the Help of Expert Decking

LSCT needed an automated yard planning system that could track containers and find the best position without mixing stacks, as well as reduce rehandles and yard shifts. "Our old system offered limited capability, making it difficult to increase yard usage or improve our decking processes," Says
Marco Fehmer, Operations System Coordinator of Contship Italia Group.

Since implementing Navis Expert Decking, a SPARCS module that automatically assigns containers to optimal positions in the yard; rehandles have decreased, and yard utilization has skyrocketed. According to Becce, "By combining Navis with organizational reengineering, we have been able to increase yard productivity and usage so that La Spezia, a terminal of 280,000 sqm, is now able to handle 900,000 TEU—more containers than we ever thought possible."

Real-time Architecture Integrates Operations and Increases Agility

LSCT needed an integrated system which gave them visibility into all aspects of the terminal, and integrated ship planning and terminal operations.

With SPARCS, LSCT can now access all of their container information in real-time and has the necessary querying, listing, and recapping functionality that was missing in their former system. "We now have a real-time view of what is happening in the terminal and are able to track all movement and see what is happening throughout the terminal, which helps us measure our productivity and keep costs under control. Additionally, we can readily access the information we need, and know that it is up-to-date. It helps us to see and track the movement and position of all containers in the terminal, track gains in productivity, and conversely, to see if we are losing time on a crane, or in the yard," says Fehmer.

Navis SPARCS Increases Planning Effectiveness

Navis Vessel Planning, a SPARCS module, has enabled ship and yard planners to be more productive and feel like they have more control. Using real-time information, planners now can quickly determine the best way to optimize the terminal through yard allocation and vessel loading plans. According to Fehmer, "Planners now have a real-time view of the terminal; where containers are, what equipment is available and where it is. Ship planners have live information on the yard, and have the ability to plan containers coming from the rail, gate, another vessel, or transshipment. They have more control of what's happening. Container information is delivered in real-time, which helps planners work concurrently to produce yard and vessel plans quicker, and more accurately."

Automated Dispatch Increases Driver Efficiency

By using a more sophisticated and automated system, crane drivers are now more confident that they are making strategic moves. This saves them time, as well as the hassle of worrying about making the right decision. "Employees are more productive; before, crane drivers were working with
a piece of paper and the radio and often had to make move decisions based on slot availability, not planning strategy. Now, with automatic dispatch to digital screens directly in the cranes, drivers can concentrate on driving, and not the context of the move."