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April 2, 2004

Fifth Austal ferry for Hellas Flying Dolphins

Australia's Austal Ships today announced a contract to build an 85 meter vehicle-passenger ferry for Greek operator Hellas Flying Dolphins (HFD). The catamaran is the fifth fast ferry HFD has ordered from Austal Ships

HFD is Greece's largest domestic ferry operator, transporting approximately 7 million passengers, 200,000 trucks and 800,000 cars every year.

Due for delivery for the 2005 European summer and to be named "Highspeed 5", the new ferry will bring the total number of vessels in the HFD fleet to 24.

Austal Sales and Product Development Manager Glenn Williams said the contract rewarded the marketing effort the company has dedicated to the Greek market over many years. "We have been pursuing opportunities in Greece for a number of years and have always believed that the area has significant potential for our fast ferries," he said.

HFD's General Manager Vassilis Zacharioudakis said: "Our high speed fleet is synonymous with state of the art transportation. We are proud to introduce "Highspeed 5" to the Eastern Mediterranean market in 2005."

Leveraging off Austal's experience from the build of the 92 meter "Highspeed 4", the new 85 meter catamaran will have three classes of seating (VIP, business and tourist) each with its own bar and facilities.

With capacity for 154 cars (or four buses and 131 cars) and 810 passengers, the vessel will display a sophisticated level of fitout, disabled persons access (including an elevator) in compliance with European Union regulations and crew accommodation for 36.

In keeping with the stern-to mooring style commonly used in Greece, the vessel will provide separate passenger and vehicle loading ramps. A bi-fold ramp enables loading and unloading onto a low landing stage and the ferry will be equipped with high speed anchor winches and mooring winches to allow for efficient berthing.

The boarding area will lead to a baggage room on the mezzanine deck and, for the comfort of passengers when boarding, dry exhaust funnels have been designed to direct main engine exhaust fumes away from the ramps and other passenger areas.

The ferry's propulsion system will consist of four diesel engines and waterjets to provide a service speed of 37 knots.

The new contract takes the number of Austal vessels on order across the group's four shipyards to 30.

PRINCIPAL PARTICULARS of the new vessel are:

Length overall:85.0 me

Length waterline:78.0 m

Beam molded:21.2 m

Hull depth molded:6.5 m

Hull draft (maximum):2.9

Deadweight (maximum):470 t

Crew:35

Passengers

VIP:120

Business:408

Tourist: 282

Total810

Vehicles:154 cars

or 4 buses and 131 cars

Axle loads:- center lanes:9 tonnes (single axle)

12 tonnes (dual axle)

- outer lanes:1 tonne

Vehicle deck clear height:4.5 metres

Fuel (approx):115,000 litres

PROPULSION

Main engines:4 x marine diesel

Propulsion:4 x waterjets

Service speed:37.0 knots

SURVEY

Classification:Germanischer Lloyd

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