Before containerisation, vessels were equipped with cargo-handling cranes to load and discharge their cargoes. As dock cranes or mobile cranes became more widespread, so the traditional gear became obsolete. Many vessels with the old equipment that had traded in the UK were therefore sold to places such as the Caribbean and West Indies, where such gear could still be utilised. One such vessel was a small German coaster, Atlantik, built in 1939. Lengthened in 1950, the vessel was renamed Persia II when she went out to Kingstown, St Vincent. She was re-engined with a Kloekner Humboldt Deutz diesel in 1971.

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