Ferries: Glen Sannox delayed due to safety modifications
An already late and over-budget ferry is set to be further delayed from entering service after the safety regulator called for internal changes.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has said shipbuilders must add three extra staircases and make some doorway modifications to the Glen Sannox ferry under cargo ship rules.
Chief executive of Ferguson Marine David Tydeman has written to MSPs on the parliament’s transport committee to alert them of the delay.
He said the adjustments mean sea trials will now not begin until the new year.
These trials must then be followed by two months of further trials by CalMac – meaning it is unlikely to be operational until after the summer season starts in April.
The change to the timetable also means the launch of the second ferry, currently named Hull 802, will be deferred a few weeks.
Tydeman said: “Sea trials will move into the first quarter of the new year and the commissioning of the LNG [liquefied natural gas] systems at Troon (which must be done after dry docking) will also move to after Christmas.”
A further update on costs and delivery dates will be provided to MSPs in September.
The Glen Sannox, which will operate on the Arran route, was set to be in service by spring next year, while 802 is expected later in the year.
The two ferries were originally meant to enter service in 2018 but have been beset by delays due to construction issues and increasing costs.
The ferries are expected to cost more than treble the original price tag of £97m.