November 19, 2003
Derecktor launches AMHS fast ferry
The largest, fastest high speed vessel thus far built in the U.S. is now in the water.
Alaska Marine Highway's newest vessel, the fast ferry M/V Fairweather was launched on November 16, 2003 at Derecktor Shipyard, Bridgeport, CT. Utilizing one of the largest Marine Travelifts in the U.S., the total load underway included the 560 metric ton ferry, as well as 82 tons of supporting structure. The two hour evolution was carried out flawlessly.
The 235 ft, 32 knot vessel is scheduled for delivery in Juneau, Alaska in February 2004; with scheduled revenue service beginning in May 2004. The completion of outfitting and a series of tests and trials on Long Island Sound are now underway. A three-week transit to Alaska via the Panama Canal will follow successful operational acceptance of the new vessel by the Alaska Marine Highway and regulatory body inspection team.
Designed by Nigel Gee and Associates, Southampton, England, the Fairweather has an aluminum hull and superstructure. Length is 235 ft, beam 60 ft and draft 8 ft. The ferry will carry 250 passengers plus 35 cars and have a crew of ten.
Propulsion is by four Rolls-Royce Kamewa 90SII steerable and reversible water jets, powered by four MTU 16V595 diesels developing 3,600 kW at 1,750 rpm.