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24/08/2020

CalMac plans range of upgrades during dry dock

West coast ferry operator CalMac is making some significant fleet improvements during this year's dry docking maintenance programme.

Every year each of the company's 34 vessels, ranging from the 8600 tonne MV Loch Seaforth, to the 11 tonne MV Carvoria, all have to have a period of maintenance to ensure continuing seaworthiness.

This presents the company with a complex logistical problem to keep all of its lifeline services running with minimal disruption.

'Organising time for each vessel to enter dry dock while keeping services running is a real challenge for us that requires detailed planning. When the weather is taken into account this can be real test keeping communities connected,' said CalMac's Director of Operations, Robert Morrison.

'Above and beyond the normal bow to stern servicing to ensure they are fit for another year's service, there are some major projects planned this year to improve comfort and resilience on a range of vessels.'

MV Loch Seaforth is having a further 40 internal seats fitted and improved Fast Rescue Craft and cranes are being added to MV Hebrides and MV Isle of Lewis which are also receiving new disabled bathroom and changing facilities.

The passenger lifts onboard MV Hebrides, MV Isle of Arran, MV Isle of Mull and MV Lord of the Isles are to be upgraded to improve reliability.

MV Lochinvar and Lord of the Isles are having lighting upgrades with fluorescent tubing being replaced by LED lighting

On MV Caledonian Isles, MV Loch Shira, MV Isle of Mull and MV Coruisk are all to be fitted with improved CCTV systems to assist in ensuring the safety of the passengers and crew.

There are also a number of upgrades to improve fleet resilience.MV Loch Portain is to have an upgraded pitch control and steering system. The hydraulic control gear for the bow visors on MV Clansman and MV Hebrides are being upgraded and navigation radar upgrades are taking place on MV Argyll Flyer, MV Caledonian Isles, MV Lochnevis, MV Loch Tarbert and MV Lord of the Isles. A new set of stabiliser control equipment is also being fitted to MV Hebrides.

This year's dry dock schedule was planned with public consultation to minimise disruption to communities where possible.

This included a decision to defer the departure of the MV Caledonian Isles until well after New Year to allow festive revellers to leave the island and included switching the relief vessel on Raasay to the larger MV Tarbert rather than the smaller MV Loch Linnhe.

'While we recognise the annual overhaul replacement vessel deployments might not fully meet the aspirations of communities served, we are tightly constrained by the availability of vessels and need to work within the resources we have available.

'Where we can we try to provide as seamless a service as possible during this period, matching suitable vessels to cover routes to keep inconvenience to a minimum. We appreciate the travelling public's patience during this time,' added Robert.

Last year CalMac carried more than 5.6 million passengers and 1.4 million vehicles. Its fleet serves 28 routes to island and remote mainland locations.

The schedule may change depending on operational priorities, but currently the arrangements are:

 

Vessel
in Overhaul

Relief Vessel

Overhaul 
due to commence

Overhaul 
due to complete

 

 

 

 

MV Loch Linnhe

N/A

25-Aug-20

08-Sep-20

Loch Riddon

MV Loch Linnhe

09-Sep-20

23-Sep-20

Lochnevis

MV Loch Bhrusda

11-Sep-20

28-Sep-20

Isle of Arran

N/A

30-Sep-20

14-Oct-20

Hallaig

MV Loch Tarbert

02-Oct-20

16-Oct-20

Loch Dunvegan

MV Loch Alainn

09-Oct-20

23-Oct-20

Loch Seaforth

MV Isle of Lewis and MV Hebridean Isles

22-Oct-20

02-Nov-20

Bute

MV Coruisk

23-Oct-20

02-Nov-20

Loch Buie

MV Loch Tarbert

23-Oct-20

06-Nov-20

Ali Cat 

MV Argyll Flyer

26-Oct-20

09-Nov-20

Hebridean Isles

N/A

07-Nov-20

25-Nov-20

Lord of the Isles

MV Isle of Arran

06-Nov-20

24-Nov-20

MV Argyle

MV Coruisk

09-Nov-20

19-Nov-20

Loch Striven

MV Loch Riddon

09-Nov-20

27-Nov-20

Loch Tarbert

MV Loch Linnhe

13-Nov-20

27-Nov-20

Coruisk

N/A

23-Nov-20

09-Dec-20

Loch Alainn

MV Loch Bhrusda

30-Nov-20

14-Dec-20

Isle of Mull

MV Isle of Arran

29-Nov-20

17-Dec-20

Catriona

MV Loch Riddon

04-Dec-20

18-Dec-20

Loch Ranza

MV Loch Linnhe

04-Jan-21

18-Jan-21

Loch Bhrusda

N/A

04-Jan-21

25-Jan-21

Ali Cat 

MV Argyll Flyer

04-Jan-21

05-Feb-21

Caledonian Isles

MV Hebridean Isles and MV Isle of Arran

05-Jan-21

20-Jan-21

Loch Shira

MV Catriona

15-Jan-21

29-Jan-21

Isle of Lewis

MV Hebridean Isles   

26-Jan-21

11-Feb-21

Clansman

MV Lord of the Isles

26-Jan-21

11-Feb-21

Isle of Cumbrae

N/A

29-Jan-21

12-Feb-21

Loch Portain

MV Loch Bhrusda

03-Feb-21

23-Feb-21

Argyll Flyer 

MV Ali Cat

08-Feb-21

19-Mar-21

Hebrides

MV Clansman

17-Feb-21

03-Mar-21

Loch Fyne

N/A

17-Feb-21

03-Mar-21

Lochinvar

MV Hallaig

03-Mar-21

17-Mar-21

Finlaggan

MV Hebridean Isles and MV Isle of Arran

08-Mar-21

22-Mar-21

Chieftain

TBC  

11-May-21

25-May-21

 

 

ends

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