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September 14, 2006

BC Ferries buys ferry from Utah

BC Ferries has arranged to acquire a ferry from the State of Utah for U.S. $200,000 . The company was the successful bidder in a competitive bidding process to acquire the 20-year-old MV John Atlantic Burr.

The vessel was extensively surveyed by BC Ferries' engineers prior to submitting a formal bid and was found to be in excellent condition. The vessel was previously operated on Lake Powell by the State of Utah Transportation Department.

"We are extremely pleased to acquire this vessel and add it to our fleet," said BC Ferries President & CEO David L. Hahn. "The vessel will undergo modifications this winter to meet BC Ferries and Transport Canada requirements. We plan to have it available for service by the summer of 2006."

The ship will be cut longitudinally for its transport to B.C. The company plans to potentially widen the vessel to add another lane and increase the vessel's carrying capacity from 26 to 35 cars.

The vessel will require an investment of approximately Canadian $4.5 million to convert it to BC Ferries' standards, transport it to the west coast and re-flag it in Canada.

A new vessel of this size would cost approximately $20 million to construct.

The ferry, which was designed by Marine Design Associates (MDA) of Victoria in 1985, was substantially upgraded with its hull and superstructure lengthened in 1996.

The MV John Atlantic Burr is a sister ship to BC Ferries' three K-class ships, the MV Kahloke, MV Klitsa and MV Kwuna. However, while those were built in Vancouver, the Burr was assembled in Utah and has never been used in salt water.

As part of BC Ferries' plan to build or replace 21 vessels over the next 15 years, the company monitors the international market for any used vessels that may fit its service needs.

SPECIFICATIONS MV JOHN ATLANTIC BURR


Current Specifications With BC Ferries' Modifications
Built/Lengthened 1985/1996 2006
Length 46.8 m (154 feet) 46.8 m (154 feet)
Breadth 12.8 m (42 feet) 15.4 m (50.5 feet)
Car Capacity 26 35
Passenger Capacity 148 300
Service Speed 8.5 knots 10 knots

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