Wight Shipyard Co has completed work on a new 250-passenger river catamaran, which will operate as part of Central Danube Region Marketing & Development's Twin City Liner fleet, transporting passengers between Vienna, Austria and Bratislava, Slovakia.
The 39-metre-long vessel is the first multi-million pound export order for the Isle of Wight-based shipyard and was officially handed over to her new owners during a traditional ceremony.
“Twin City Liner in Vienna, our first export order, follows domestic orders for Red Funnel and MBNA Thames Clippers, both of which we secured against international competition,” said Peter Morton, CEO of Wight Shipyard. “Our reputation for building the finest high-speed ferries in the world is spreading, making the prospects for Wight Shipyard look healthy. Our strong order book is a big vote of confidence for our Isle of Wight shipwrights, the marine industry and indeed the UK economy.”
Designed by Australia-based marine engineering firm Incat Crowther, the low-wash round bilge catamaran was purpose-built to operate on the Danube, a restricted waterway that has currents of up to 8 knots and water depths that can be as low as 100 centimetres. The hull has also been designed to cope with floating timber and debris in the river.
The vessel is powered by four Scania DI16 072M main engines, each producing 809 kilowatts at 2,300 revolutions per minute, which enables her to reach a maximum speed of 38 knots. Both the engine and jet rooms have been designed so that the ferry’s engines, generators and water jets can be removed without slipping the vessel or damaging the superstructure or hull.
Onboard spaces include a main cabin with seating for 186 passengers and a kiosk providing a range of refreshments, as well as an upper deck with external seating for 29 travellers, interior seating for 35 people and space for 12 bikes.
The new vessel will begin service at the end of March.
“With the new vessel from Wight Shipyard Co, we want to extend the success story of Twin City Liner for the next 25 years,” said Gerd Krämer, managing director of Twin City Liner. “Customer experience is key to our business and with our new catamaran we are promising our passengers an even more exciting and enjoyable time on the Danube River. With this new vessel, we will cater for projected traffic growth, achieve much better operating economies of scale, greatly reduce our environmental footprint and at the same time be able to offer a comfortable and exciting high-speed transit along this beautiful waterway.”
|Caption||Twin City Liner's new vessel will begin service at the end of March (Image: Wight Shipyard Co)|