Incat Tasmania continues construction during challenging times

Australian shipyard has made significant progress on three new ferries after introducing enhanced health and safety measures to protect its workers against Covid-19

Incat Tasmania continues construction during challenging times
The 100-metre-long Buccoo Reef will have capacity for 1,000 passengers and 239 cars

Despite several delayed orders, supply chain challenges and other operational difficulties, Incat Tasmania has continued to work on ferry construction projects throughout the global Covid-19 pandemic. To ensure our employees could work safely and productively, however, we implemented significant changes at our yard in Hobart, Tasmania.

From when Covid-19 started to impact Australia, we introduced social distancing measures on our premises, splitting shipyard workers onto different shifts and staggering break times. Similarly, staff in our design, naval architecture, engineering, purchasing, human resources, quality assurance and accounts teams were divided between two buildings – a new office complex that opened in 2018 and its old office. Some also worked from home. We introduced an increased cleaning regime, restricted yard visitations to essential workers only and implemented routine health checks and surveys.

Thanks to these enhanced health and safety practices, we were able to start the commissioning phase for the Government of Trinidad and Tobago’s new ferry, Buccoo Reef, in August in preparation for launch, sea trials and delivery before the end of 2020.

Featuring a white exterior with striking red and black livery, the 100-metre ferry will have capacity for 1,000 passengers and 239 cars (or 182 cars with 175 lane metres for trucks). The vessel will also have a colourful Caribbean-themed interior with four seating areas, two bars and food service areas. Its technical features include a propulsion system comprising four diesel engines from MAN Energy Solutions and four Wärtsilä waterjets, as well as an active ride control system from Naiad Dynamics to maximise passenger comfort.

Incat has also made significant progress on a 111-metre ro-pax ferry for a European operator, which is due for completion in mid-2021. Designed as a sister to Volcan de Tagoro which Incat delivered in July 2019, the 1,200-person ferry will have a vehicle deck with space for 401 cars (or 219 cars with 595 lane metres for trucks). Onboard highlights will include a gift shop and three seating areas, each with bars and food services stations.

In addition, our team is building a 76-metre, high-speed vessel for South Korean operator SeaWorld Express Ferry. The wave-piercing ferry will feature an optimised hull and bow arrangement to improve speed and fuel consumption. It will cater for up to 700 passengers and 86 cars and serve the new route between Jindo and Jeju from early 2022.

Tim Burnell is CEO of Incat Tasmania

This article was first published in the Autumn/Winter 2020 issue of Cruise & Ferry Review. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.

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By Tim Burnell
11 November 2020

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