September 26, 2003

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Another ferry order for Philippines yard

Rederij Doeksen has selected FBMA Babcock Marine, Cebu, Philippines, for construction of a 64 m vehicle and passenger catamaran. Rederij Doeksen is a leading Dutch ferry operator, in business since 1923, and currently operating five ferries, including Ro-Ro vessels and high speed craft.

The new 64 m vessel will have a service speed of 15 knots and operate on the Harlingen to Vlieland route across the Waddenzee in The Netherlands. The catamaran will be the largest vessel so far constructed at the FBMA Babcock Marine yard in Cebu, Philippines, with delivery in November 2004.

The catamaran will have a steel hull and aluminum superstructure. It will incorporate a drive-through vehicle deck with bow and stern access for roll-on roll-off vehicular handling and rapid turnaround in port. Spacious passenger accommodations on three decks include over 900 internal seats, with overall capacity of up to 1,300 passengers. Passenger arrangements include a VIP lounge, tourist class saloons with a mixture of aircraft style seating and table and chair arrangements, separate bar area available for renting out to groups, and a large open sun deck. A large servery will provide passengers with a range of refreshment choices on the crossing, and there is also a separate play area for children.

The needs of passengers with disabilities have been carefully considered with ease of access ensured by wide aisles for ease of movement, ramp access and lifting platform at the aft boarding point and lifts for access to the main and upper decks.

The vehicle deck will accommodate up to 58 cars along with motorbikes and cycles, or a mix of cars, baggage carts and trucks of up to 12.0 tonne axle load down the central vehicle lane.

Stern and bow doors will allow rapid drive through loading/unloading capability with the hydraulically operated bow visor hinging down below the horizontal to facilitate landing on an adjustable shore bridge. A sloping bonnet over the vehicle deck with hinged opening covers will ensure that trucks can be loaded or unloaded at all potential angles of the shore bridge resulting from tidal or vessel draft and trim variations.

Two bow thrusters are fitted to ensure high maneuverability whilst berthing and the four propellers are specially designed for operation in shallow and highly silted conditions. The forward half of the vessel and transom will be strengthened to enable safe navigation in potential ice conditions in the Waddenzee, with capability of up to 300 mm nominal ice thickness, and up to 400 mm of snow cover.

Paul Melles, managing director of Rederij Doeksen said "We had the vessel designed to our requirements by Sea Transport Solutions of Queensland, Australia, which then allowed us the flexibility to select the best builder. After visiting a number of yards and viewing their work we are very pleased to place this order with FBMA Babcock Marine. The yard has exhibited an excellent quality of workmanship and, coupled with a competitive price, we expect to gain a first class vessel to add to our fleet."

John Warbey, managing director of FBM Babcock Marine, said "This contract is another important milestone in the development of the FBMA Babcock Marine shipyard in Cebu, Philippines. Coming so soon after the order for a 47 m Ro-Pax and the completion of three 27 m aluminum patrol craft for the U.K., it demonstrates the excellent capability of the yard."

Doug Border, general manager of the FBMA Babcock Marine shipyard noted "This contract was won against strong competition from other international shipyards and is a clear statement of FBMA Babcock Marine's quality and the excellent reputation it is building in the market".

Principal particulars

Yard Number: 1018

Overall length: 64.14 me

Waterline length: 57.8 m

Beam (molded): 17.0 m

Draft: 2.5 m

Passengers: 1,300

Cars: 58 or a mix of cars and trucks

Main engines: 4 x Cat 3508B 620 kW @ 85%MCR

Gearboxes: Reintjes WAF 143 reverse reduction gearboxes

Propellers: 4 x Teignbridge AMW polished 5 blade

Service Speed: 15 knots

Deadweight: 350 tonnes

Classification: Lloyds Register to Lloyds SSC Rules Category G2

Flag: IVW Scheepvaart (Netherlands Shipping Inspectorate)

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