Leizhou Class (Coastal Tanker)
The Leizhou class tanker was a class of Chinese tankers that was in service with People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). There are nearly 100 small coastal tankers known to be in existence by the year 2000. These vessels were primarily employed in transporting fuel & water between ports, and for in-port replenishment of warships. The Leizhou class tanker was built in two distinct versions, the majority of which were built as water tankers (AWL), and a smaller number - totaling 5 vessels - were built as coastal oil tankers (AOTL). The oil tanker version can be distinguished by their raised cargo expansion trunk down the centerline of the well deck. Entering service with PLAN since the early 1960s, these ships were disarmed and retired in the new century.
The Leizhou Peninsula is a spur of land thrusting south from the China coast towards Hainan Island. Leizhou in southern China is well known for its fish ponds, mangroves and mudflats. Lacking major tourist attractions like soaring mountains or renowned historic sites, and with only modest transport links by modern China standards, it lies apart from the tourist trail. But with its expansive landscape, wetlands with a host of waterbirds, traditional lifestyle and blend of typical southern Chinese and local Leizhou culture, the peninsula makes for a rewarding visit, and is perfect for a long weekend.
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