Oceania Marine has a Case of “Bump, Bump, Bump…..” on the Reef
It’s a situation that for most of us who drive boats we hope to avoid but for the captain of a tug with a 58 metre container, transport, barge in tow that is what happened. The tug went up first and the barge soon followed. It occurred on the barrier reef of one of our neighbouring Tropical Islands and the barge has just been hauled out at Oceania Marine Shipyard for urgent repairs after a 1000 mile plus voyage. The tug arrives, under tow, later this month. To see our Flickr photo diary of the haulout and repairs underway CLICK HERE.
According to Oceania Marine Managing Director, Martin Gleeson, finding a slot for the Barge and Tug for urgent repairs was not easy at such short notice – “Luckily we have one the longest slipways in the Oceania region capable of taking multiple projects so with a bit of juggling we were able to fulfil existing commitments and accommodate the urgent repairs. We have managed to get the barge to the head of the slipway so that freed up the lower sections. At over 500 tonne all up on the rails it was not feasible to look at side-slipping” he stated.
A further complication is that the shipyard is just about to start the superyacht refit season. Oceania Marine Project Manager Brent Charlesworth explains – “We have had trouble this season getting yachts to confirm exact dates and committing to work. Perhaps it is a sign of the economic situation we all find ourselves in but that is how it is and we have to deal with it. Our problem now is that our access to the main refit shed for larger superyachts is blocked by the barge for the next couple of months. However we still have Shed A which at 110 x 40 metres is the largest refit shed in New Zealand and we will have to look at side-shifting projects into there. For vessels less than 300 tonnes this is a straight forward process but for larger ones there is a bit more involved”.
In any event slipway access will return to normal early in the New Year which probably suits most yacht clients’ cruising itineraries. Meanwhile the Shipyard is due to start 6 additional projects.