Horonuku has arrived safely in Australia, clearing customs this week in Adelaide after its journey via sea from Auckland over the past month or so.
As sure as the sun rises each day, Landspeed pilot, Glenn Ashby, was there to meet the containers loaded with every conceivable item required for an outback World Record Wind Powered Landspeed attempt as well as Horonuku itself.
“I’m extremely pleased it has got here in one piece and it’s pretty exciting to have it here on Australian soil.” said Ashby, now comfortable in the fact his high-tech land yacht is safely in Australia.
Not yet at its final destination, this week’s task of significance has been to carefully de-van both containers at the Adelaide freight depot so that the Quarantine and Customs inspectors can have a good walk through the containers and inspect everything.
“This isn’t a small or insignificant task. Clearly it is important to do as part of the customs and quarantine process, but it is not without risk unfortunately,” Ashby explained.
“A few of the guys back at base in Auckland are a bit concerned because the containers have been packed very intricately to ensure no damage to Horonuku, or any of the contents of the container, while in transit.
“I need to be very careful that once it is unpacked, everything is repacked precisely as it was, because the most hazardous part of the journey to Lake Gairdner remains, a lot of which is on unsealed dirt roads. So, one loose item rolling around a container has the potential to cause a lot of damage and affect the whole program.”
The two-day process to unpack / inspect and repack for Ashby and a small team of people at the Rapid Transport facility passed with a tick of approval, all cleared and ready to roll.
“We’ve pulled everything out. They’ve gone through everything. Fortunately, we’ve been given the thumbs up that everything’s okay. So that’s really fantastic news for the program.
“Now it’s time to load everything back into those containers and get them all strapped down again. And we’ll basically be looking at trucking those containers to get set up at Lake Gairdner really, really soon.”
Despite the pass mark from the authorities on the customs check, the pass mark on the repack will only be known when the container doors are opened up at Lake Gairdner in the coming weeks.