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VLADIVOSTOK, February 11 (Itar-Tass) — The Admiral Makarov icebreaker of the Far Eastern Shipping Line started on Saturday piloting ships to the ice-covered port of Vanino, Khabarovsk Territory.
It piloted out to open water at first six transports, including ferries with people and freight, working on the Vanino-Kholmsk (Sakhalin) sea service. The Admiral Makarov is now piloting several freighters to Vanino piers, which could not cross ice, covering the approaches to the port, Tass learnt at the information service of the port chief.
“On Friday evening, the Sakhalin-9 and Sakhalin-10 ferries, fighting ice for three days, could break through to Vanino on their own. This Saturday, they sailed out for their regular trips, piloted by the icebreaker,” noted specialists of the Vanino port.
The Admiral Makarov came to Vanino from the De-Kastri port, located north along the Khabarovsk Territory coast. The icebreaker piloted giant tankers from De-Kastri, calling at this haven for crude pumped to the port through a pipeline from the Sakhalin shelf.
Approaches to De-Kastri are also covered by ice, but the Krasin icebreaker remains there; it is equal to the Admiral Makarov in its capacity. The Polar Pevek tug-boat of the ice-breaking class of the Primorye Sea Shipping Line also constantly operates at the port; it is capable of breaking ice 1.5 metres thick.
Giant tankers will be piloted by the Krasin and the tug-boat, while the Admiral Makarov operates in Vanino port.
The Vanino port is stranded by ice each winter when winds blow from the west. But when they change to the eastern direction, ice breaks up, and freighters can independently approach Vanino piers.