Upbeat update

Troubled ferry sea trial ‘overwhelmingly positive’

MV Glen Sannox undergoing sea trials (Pic: Steve McIntosh at H.A.W.Q. Drone Services)

The troubled Ferguson Marine yard on the Clyde received some good news yesterday after the first phase of sea trials for one of its delayed ferries were said to have been “overwhelmingly positive”.

Known as ‘builder’s sea trials’, this phase of testing focused on establishing the capabilities of the MV Glen Sannox’s propulsion, automation, power generation and navigational systems.

Over the past four days the vessel has been put through a strict test regime which was overseen by Lloyds Register. This was designed to evaluate her performance and manoeuvring capabilities as well as speed, stability and efficiency. 

Systems tested this week include the main engines, generators, thrusters, engines full astern/fast stops and communications.

Her trial journeys took her as far as the lower Clyde between the Isle of Bute and Largs, and saw her achieve a maximum speed of 16.7 knots SOG (speed over ground), confirming she can operate at her planned speed of 14.5 knots.

MV Glen Sannox is one of two ferries being built by Ferguson Marine at Port Glasgow which are over-budget and long overdue, largely as a result of changes to the specification during manufacture.

David Tydeman, chief executive at Ferguson Marine (Port Glasgow), said: “The results of this first phase of trials have been overwhelmingly positive, clearly demonstrating the advanced technology which MV Glen Sannox will bring to the CalMac fleet.

“Next steps for the vessel will be a return to the Ferguson Marine quayside, where she will undergo further outfitting and LNG system work before a trip to the dry dock in early April.

“After that will come what’s known as ‘owner’s sea trials’ with CMAL as representatives for Scottish Ministers on board.

“In April and May, she will also undergo endurance tests – when she will operate at higher speeds for longer periods of time.”

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