BC Ferries welcomes Salish Orca to British Columbia

BC Ferries welcomes Salish Orca to British Columbia
Salish Orca arrives at BC Ferries' refit facility in Vancouver

BC Ferries welcomed the first of its three new Salish Class ferries in British Columbia, Canada on 11 January.

Salish Orca arrived after a 10,440 nautical mile journey from the Remontowa Shipbuilding yard in Gdansk, Poland, which lasted 50 days. The vessel will be officially handed over to BC Ferries when she has cleared Canadian Customs and completed her final inspections.

Crew will be trained over the next few months to familiarise them themselves with the vessel and her systems. Salish Orca will then start service on the Powell River and Comox route in spring 2017.

“This is a very exciting day for all of us at BC Ferries as we proudly welcome this beautiful ship, Salish Orca, home to British Columba and into our fleet,” said Mike Corrigan, BC Ferries’ president and CEO. “The Salish Class vessels will provide us cost savings and efficiencies with standardised vessels and greater interoperability as well as enhance safety well into the future. They are very well built ships, which will serve our customers for many years to come.”

The three Salish Class vessels are BC Ferries’ first LNG-fuelled ferries and can accommodate up to 145 vehicles and 600 passengers and crew. Using natural gas as the primary fuel source is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by around 15-25%, sulphur oxides by at least 85%, nitrogen oxides by 50% and particulate matter by almost 100%.

Salish Orca’s sister ships, Salish Eagle and Salish Raven, are expected to arrive in British Columbia this spring and will start service in the Southern Gulf Islands later this year.

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Rebecca Gibson
By Rebecca Gibson
Friday, January 13, 2017