January 12, 2005
The Cat links Trinidad and Tobago
The Incat Australia built fast ferry The Cat has been time chartered by Bay Ferries of Canada to the Port Authority of Trinidad & Tobago.
The Cat entered commercial service on an 85 nautical mile route between Port of Spain, Trinidad, and Scarborough, Tobago, on January 10th. Its run time is two and a half hours, about half that of a conventional ferry. On several journeys, crossing times have been as short as 2 hours 15 minutes.
The charter agreement followed more than three years of investigating tonnage options, involving the Tobago House of Assembly, the Port Authority of Trinidad & Tobago, the Ministry of Transport and Works, the Government Shipping Service and several technical sub committees.
The Cat is an Incat 98 m Wave Piercing Catamaran capable of carrying up to 900 persons, 260 cars or a combination of cars, buses and trucks. The Cat can operate, loaded and in commercial service, at speeds up to 40 knots. It was built at the Incat shipyard in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.
Throughout the Charter period 'The Cat' will be based in Scarborough, Tobago and whilst in the first few weeks of commercial service it will operate one return crossing per day, from late January, in anticipation of the world famous Trinidad & Tobago Carnival, the vessel will operate two return crossings. The vessel will operate until the end of May when it is scheduled to return to Canada for summer operations between Yarmouth, Nova Scotia and Bar Harbor, Me.