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WHAT IS A RORO?

RORO is short for “roll on,


roll off”. This simply refers
to the method by which
vehicles and machinery
are loaded onto large
ocean shipping vessels for
transport overseas. This can sometimes be a cheaper method of moving vehicles
internationally. And if the vehicle you are shipping is too big to physically fit in a container, you
will have to ship this via RORO.

RORO is very similar to a car ferry. Thousands of vehicles are lined up at the docks, usually with
the keys left in the ignition for a number of days prior to departure. Dock workers will then
drive your vehicle onto the ship and strap it down to make it ready for sailing. This applies to all
types of vehicles, including cars, trucks, construction vehicles, tractors, trailers, mobile homes,
RV’s, backhoes, bulldozers, and many other types of oversized cargo.

Roll-on, roll-off ships are vessels designed to carry wheeled cargo that are driven on and off the
ship on their own wheels. This is in contrast to lift-on, lift-off (LOLO) vessels, which use a crane
to load and unload cargo. RORO vessels have built-in ramps that allow the cargo to be
efficiently loaded and unloaded when in port.
In the past, cargo on ocean vessels that consisted of wheeled vehicles was treated like any
other cargo. Automobiles had to have their fuel tanks emptied and their batteries disconnected
before being loaded onto the ship, where they were then chocked and secured. This process
was tedious and difficult, and many vehicles were damaged during the process. As a result, this
could not be used for routine travel.

In 1957, the US military issued a contract to the Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company in
Chester, Pennsylvania. The contract was for the construction of a new type of motorized vehicle
carrier. The ship, called the Comet, had a stern ramp as well as interior ramps, which allowed
cars to drive directly from the dock, onto the ship, and into place. This new type of vessel
dramatically sped up loading and unloading. The Comet had a ventilation system to remove
exhaust gasses that are prevalent during vehicle loading, and also had an adjustable chocking
system for locking cars onto the deck.

Another advantage to shipping vehicles via the RORO method is that unloading fees in the
destination port are often cheaper than unloading a container, as you do not need container
handling services.
In other references,

Roll-on/roll-off (RORO or ro-ro) ships are ferries designed to carry wheeled cargo, such
as cars, trucks, semi-trailer trucks, trailers, and railroad cars, that are driven on and off the ship
on their own wheels or using a platform vehicle, such as a self-propelled modular transporter.
This is in contrast to lift-on/lift-off (LoLo) vessels, which use a crane to load and unload cargo.
RORO vessels have either built-in or shore-based ramps or ferry slips that allow the cargo to be
efficiently rolled on and off the vessel when in port. While smaller ferries that operate
across rivers and other short distances often have built-in ramps, the term RORO is generally
reserved for large oceangoing vessels. The ramps and doors may be located in stern, bow or
sides, or any combination thereof.

Types of RORO vessels include ferries, cruise ferries, cargo ships, barges, and RoRo service for
air deliveries. New automobiles that are transported by ship are often moved on a large type of
RORO called a pure car carrier (PCC) or pure car/truck carrier (PCTC).

Elsewhere in the shipping industry, cargo is normally measured by the metric tonne, but RORO
cargo is typically measured in lanes in metres (LIMs). This is calculated by multiplying the cargo
length in metres by the number of decks and by its width in lanes (lane width differs from
vessel to vessel, and there are several industry standards). On PCCs, cargo capacity is often
measured in RT or RT43 units (based on a 1966 Toyota Corona, the first mass-produced car to
be shipped in specialised car-carriers and used as the basis of RORO vessel size. 1 RT is
approximately 4m of lane space required to store a 1.5m wide Toyota Corona) or in car-
equivalent units (CEU).

The largest RORO passenger ferry is MS Color Magic, a 75,100 GT cruise ferry that entered
service in September 2007 for Color Line. Built in Finland by Aker Finnyards, it is 223.70 m
(733 ft 11 in) long and 35 m (114 ft 10 in) wide, and can carry 550 cars, or 1270 lane meters of
cargo.
The RORO passenger ferry with the greatest car-carrying capacity is Ulysses (named after a
novel by James Joyce), owned by Irish Ferries. Ulysses entered service on 25 March 2001 and
operates between Dublin and Holyhead. The 50,938 GT ship is 209.02 m (685 ft 9 in) long and
31.84 m (104 ft 6 in) wide, and can carry 1342 cars/4101 lane meters of cargo.
Car carriers
The first cargo ships specially fitted for the transport of large quantities of cars came into
service in the early 1960s. These ships still had their own loading gear and so-called hanging
decks inside. They were, for example, chartered by the German Volkswagen AG to transport
vehicles in the U.S. and Canada. During the 1970s, the market for exporting and importing cars
has increased dramatically and the number and type of ROROs has increased also. In 1970
Japan's K Line built the "Toyota Maru No. 10", Japan's first pure car carrier, and in 1973 built
the European Highway, the largest pure car carrier (PCC) at that time, which carried 4,200
automobiles. Today's pure car carriers and their close cousins, the pure car/truck carrier (PCTC),
are distinctive ships with a box-like superstructure running the entire length and breadth of the
hull, fully enclosing the cargo. They typically have a stern ramp and a side ramp for dual loading
of thousands of vehicles (such as cars, trucks, heavy machineries, tracked units, Mafi roll
trailers, and loose statics), and extensive automatic fire control systems.
The PCTC has liftable decks to increase vertical clearance, as well as heavier decks for "high-
and-heavy" cargo. A 6,500-unit car ship, with 12 decks, can have three decks which can take
cargo up to 150 short tons (136 t; 134 long tons) with liftable panels to increase clearance from
1.7 to 6.7 m (5 ft 7 in to 22 ft 0 in) on some decks. Lifting decks to accommodate higher cargo
reduces the total capacity.
These kinds of vessels perform a usual speed of 16 knots at eco-speed, while at full speed can
achieve more than 19 knots.
With the building of Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics's 8,000-CEU car carrier Faust out of
Stockholm in June 2007 car carriers entered a new era of the large car and truck carrier
(LCTC).[3] Currently, the largest are Höegh Autoliners Six Horizon class vessels with capacity of
8,500 CEU each.
The car carrier Auriga Leader, belonging to Nippon Yusen Kaisha, built in 2008 with a capacity of
6,200 cars, is the world's first partially solar powered ship.[4
Seaworthiness
The seagoing RORO car ferry, with large external doors close to the waterline and open vehicle
decks with few internal bulkheads, has a reputation for being a high-risk design, to the point
where the acronym is sometimes derisively expanded to "roll on/roll over".[5] An improperly
secured loading door can cause a ship to take on water and sink, as happened in 1987
with MS Herald of Free Enterprise. Water sloshing on the vehicle deck can set up a free surface
effect, making the ship unstable and causing it to capsize. Free surface water on the vehicle
deck was determined by the Court of Inquiry to be the immediate cause of the 1968 capsize of
the TEV Wahine in New Zealand.[6] It also contributed to the wreck of MS Estonia.
Despite these inherent risks, the very high freeboard raises the seaworthiness of these vessels.
For example, the car carrier MV Cougar Ace listed 80 degrees to its port side in 2006, but did
not sink, since its high enclosed sides prevented water from entering.
In late January 2016 MV Modern Express was listing off France after cargo shifted on the ship.
Salvage crews secured the vessel and it was hauled into the port of Bilbao, Spain.
RORO Variations

RORO Variations

Variation Remarks

The ConRo (or RoCon) vessel is a hybrid of a RORO and a container ship. This
type of vessel has a below-deck area used for vehicle storage while
stacking containerized freight on the top decks. ConRo ships, such as the G4
ConRO class of the Atlantic Container Line, can carry a combination of containers,
heavy equipment, oversized cargo, and automobiles. Separate internal ramp
systems within the vessel segregate automobiles from other vehicles, Mafi roll
trailers, and break-bulk cargo.

Large, Medium-Speed Roll-on/Roll-off (LMSR) refers to several classes


LMSR of Military Sealift Command (MSC) roll-on/roll-off type cargo ships. Some are
purpose-built to carry military cargo, while others are converted.

A RoLo (roll-on/lift-off) vessel is another hybrid vessel type, with ramps serving
RoLo vehicle decks but with other cargo decks only accessible when the tides
change or by the use of a crane.

The acronym ROPAX (roll-on/roll-off passenger) describes a RORO vessel built


for freight vehicle transport along with passenger accommodation. Technically
ROPAX this encompasses all ferries with both a roll-on/roll-off car deck and
passenger-carrying capacities, but in practice, ships with facilities for more
than 500 passengers are often referred to as cruiseferries.[citation needed]
WHAT IS A RORO TERMINAL?

A RORO terminal, which may also be known (for example) as a passenger terminal, ferry
terminal, cruise terminal, marine terminal or maritime passenger terminal, is a structure in
a port where ferries and possibly cruise ships pick up and drop off passengers and vehicles.
Passengers may be loaded by a gangway or by a linkspan. Vehicles may be driven off the ship
directly. Goods packed in containers may be driven onto the vessel by a vehicle which then
detaches itself from the container and returns to shore.
If the ferry terminal handles vehicles, it will usually have the facilities, such as appropriate
markings on the ground, to enable the vehicles to line up in an orderly manner.
RORO terminals may vary greatly in size: some terminals, perhaps in large ports, have
passenger facilities comparable with medium-sized airports, while a terminal in a small island
location may just have the means to tie up the vessel and a short ramp to enable vehicles to be
driven onto it.
RORO terminals may have several docks, in order to handle more than one ship simultaneously.
VERNACULAR ARCHITETCURE IN THE PHILIPPHINES

Construction and Materials


The bahay kubo and bahay na bato employ traditional post and lintel construction/platform
framing. As noted above, the pre-Hispanic bahay kubo utilizes building materials that are
abundant and immediately available (e.g. timber, bamboo, palm fronds and grass), creating a
light structure suited to the tropics. The simple construction and use of local materials facilitate
the dwelling’s easy reconstruction and/or repair following earthquakes, typhoons or floods.
Floor Plan and Spatial
Arrangement
These traditional Philippine
dwellings are typically simple
rectangles or squares in
plain/simple boxes in form. In the
most traditional bahay kubos,
which generally range from 320
to 550 square feet, the raised
dwelling area is in fact a single,
large space, variously used as a
living room, dining room and
bedroom. Typically, the only
enclosed room in the otherwise
open plan is the celda; this room
is provided and used only for the
most intimate functions (e.g.
washing, changing clothing) and
for securing valuables. In larger houses, the spaces within the dwelling are arranged as a series
of layers that flow into each other — defined volumes but not full enclosures — with mutable
partitions and boundaries. The bahay kubo is raised on posts to avoid the damp earth, or
worse, floods, and to prevent insects and animals from entering the house. Domestic animals,
tools and implements are kept in the silong. The raised floor also allows air to rise up between
the floor slats, cooling the living space. The raised habitable area is retained in the bahay na
bato, where the ground floor zaguan remains for storage, carriage parking and/or small-scale
business use. The bahay na bato may also incorporate a courtyard/patio, providing an
additional private area for the family, as well as allowing more light and ventilation into the
house.
Walls and Openings
With an internal wooden
frame, the bahay na bato’s
ground floor stone walls are
non-load bearing and mitigate
severe damage in the event of
earthquakes. In addition, the
upper floor typically extends
beyond the line of supporting
posts. With the upper exterior
walls being non-load bearing
and lightly constructed, tall
and wide wall openings for
maximum daylight and cross-
ventilation are possible.
Indeed, the windows of the traditional Philippine house take up a high proportion of the wall
surface area, in many instances more than 50 percent. The window system itself comprises
multiple components, with one layer of sliding panels fitted with translucent windowpane
oyster shells (“capiz”) and a second layer of manually operable wooden louvers. The capiz
panels slide wholly into recesses in the walls for maximum ventilation, while the wood jalousies
can be adjusted to block the harsh sun. In inclement weather, the sliding capiz panels can be
completely shut while still permitting daylight into the house. Transom windows/vents above
the main windows and under the roof eaves, as well as ventanillas — small shuttered windows
with balusters or grills placed below the main windows — let air in even when the capiz panels
are drawn (e.g. at night). In some houses, voladas (perimeter passages) are also provided,
allowing air to circulate around, and cool, the house. (They also permitted servants to circulate
from room to room without disturbing the master’s family in the main living spaces. Some
voladas were larger, allowing the women to “paseo”, promenading indoors/walking the
perimeter of the house while chatting.) Overall, this comprehensive system, while low-tech,
allows full control of the amount of light and air entering the house.
Roof and Eaves
The roof is regarded as the most important element in Filipino architecture. Traditional
Philippine dwellings have a steep slope for easily shedding rain, with means for capturing and
storing rainwater. The steep slope also helps draw hot indoor air upwards to the top of the roof
and away from the living areas. Deep overhangs protect the large windows from harsh sunlight
and rain, with vented soffits to further assist in dissipating the hot air and moderating the
temperature inside the roof structure, and consequently, the living spaces below.
This contemporary variation of the
bahay kubo, found in a small island
village in Central Philippines, retains the
literally open, multi-functional space
arranged around a celda.
At Casa Manila, a restored bahay na
bato in Intramuros, the zaguan leads
into a courtyard that provides light
and ventilation to the rooms framing
it. Meanwhile, the ground floor spaces
have been occupied by small-scale
commercial uses.

Large capiz window panels may be slid back for full


100% window opening, augmented by smaller transom
windows/vents above and ventanillas below. These
ultimately create a floor-to-ceiling window.

Voladas provide
an extra layer of
insulating air for
cooling the
house.

The roof is among the most striking


features of Casa Unisan (built in
1839). The roof is configured as
quatro aguas (hip roof) at the eaves
transforming into dos aguas (gable
roof) towards the ridge to allow for air vents.