Brake Harbor


The modern, multi-functional special ship harbor Brake with the international call sign DEBKE has been operated by the Lower Saxony Ports GmbH & Co. KG since 2005. The owner ist he State of Lower Saxony. Ships coming from the North sea and having drafts slightly exceeding twelve meters can reach Brake´s Stromkajen which has a length of 2.5 kilometers. A railway connection and modern truck terminals provide for an ideal traffic infrsstructure. In particular, bulk products such as grain, animal feed, sulphur, minerals and wood products, but also iron ore and project / heavy lift goods are handled in Brake. The imposing silos of the company J. Müller, founded 1821, have been part of the harbor ambience of Brake for a long time.

The modern Harbor for Special Ships

The "Stromkajen" around 1910
Today, Brake is one of the five harbors in Lower Saxony administered by the Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG. The Harbor Administration manages the harbor facilities, adapts them with respect to the traffic demands and transshipment developments, guarantees the safety and honors the law of the seas.
Brake has more than 110 ha of modern, specialized and multifunctional harbor facilities for the rapid loading and discharging of cargoes of sea-going vessels. The facilities extend for more than 2.5 kilometers parallel to the Weser, and a river pier measuring more than 2 kilometers can be used by a maximal draft of 11.90 meters.
The southerly harbor area is dedicated to the traditional transshipment of grain and feed. The honeycomb cell silos, together with their self-service loading systems for wagons and trucks, were built in 1983 by the company J. Müller and are an integral part of the harbor skyline.
In 1999, J. Müller bought up the silos operations from the company Karl Gross, and the AGRI Terminal, having a storage capacity of 500,000 tons along the south point, has been in the hands of one operator ever since. In the meantime, the enterprise J. Müller has been involved with harbor operations in Brake for nearly 200 unbroken years.
The northerly area of the harbor is dominated by large crane facilities for the handling of bulk commodities, having storage halls with areas of 100.000 m² and open storage spaces of up to 60.000 m². A break-bulk terminal allows for the prompt loading of sea ships, partly taking place by virtue of inland or coastal motor ships with large rotary and bridge cranes with a carrying capacity of up to 88 tons. Break Bulk consists of high-volume, potentially freezable piece goods such as iron and steel products, wood pulp, recyclables, forestry products, project and wind power plants. Exclusively in Brake´s deep water harbor, moreover, some 400,000 tons of sulfur in liquid or solid form are handled annually; the solidification facility of the Exxon Mobil Production Germany plays a major role in this regard.
Since 2012, the northern end of the harbor terminal, a private terminal with a length of 240 meters, is the home of the refinery of the palm oil company Wilmar Edible Oils GmbH, a subsidiary of Asia´s leading agricultural group.
Further to the north, near the Waterways and Shipping Office of Bremerhaven, the harbor profile is defined by the Niedersachsenkai (Lower Saxony Quay), 450 meters long and with two berths for large ships as well as an overall area of 50 ha. The pier for heavy goods, being equipped with two bridge cranes each having capacities of 60 tons and outfitted with two mobile cranes having carrying capacities of 140 and respectively 144 tons, specializes in handling wind energy facilities and steel logistics.

Brak Bulk and Jobs

Traces of the firm Karl Gross remain
In 2012, the various efficient and specialized harbor segments handling maritime cargoes exceeded a combined total of more than six million tons. Furthermore, some 2,200 employees in Brake profit from working in or for the harbor. Access is limited to authorized persons and tour groups registered in advance.

Cargo Handling 2014*in million metric tons
Grains and Feeding Stuff
Forest Products
Iron and Steel
Other Cargo
Ocean Cargo Handling total
Barge Cargo Handling total
Total Cargo Handling
Nevertheless, the largest portion of the inland harbor is outside of the restricted area. It is accessible from the Weser via a tide-independent sea sluice, having a chamber which is 95 meters long. Coastal motor ships and inland vessels of the European logistics traffic are handled here.

Experiences in the museum

The development of Brake’s harbor and along with it the development of Brake is the topic at several places in the Maritime Museum of the Oldenburgian Lower Weser. A good view of the harbor area can be found at the top floor of the Telegraph.
You can find more information at the "Lock" station.
Maritime Museum - Telegraph, Kaje 8, 26919 Brake - 5th floor
Lock, Am Binnenhafen, 26919 Brake

Ships currently at the Brake harbor

Karte der Stationen