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Sailings cancelled due to technical trouble
Two Interislander ferry services have been cancelled after a propulsion technical issue on the "Aratere" on June 14, 2019. The 2.45 p.m. service from Wellington to Picton, and the 6.45 p.m. service from Picton to Wellington, have been cancelled. The ship was on a freight-only sailing when it had a propulsion technical issue in the morning while travelling across Cook Strait. A tug escorted the ship into Picton as a precaution. After the crew assessed the situation, it continued its voyage to Picton. The "Aratere" was to return to Wellington in the afternoon. Affected freight customers and passengers have been notified and were to be accommodated on other sailings.
Ferry damaged in allision
The "Aratere" was damaged while docking at the Wellington wharf on Jan 31, 2019 about 10 p.m. upon its arrival from Picton. No passengers were hurt or vehicles damaged, but the ferry needed repairing before services could resume. It returned to operation on Feb 1 at 10.45 a.m. Three sailings were cancelled and passengers and freight booked on the ferry were put on other sailings. The incident had also caused delays to rail freight services.
Kiwirail accepts recommendations after propeller loss
The Transport Accident Investigation Committee’s report into the loss of the "Aratere"’s propeller in 2013 makes valuable recommendations around the standard for advanced propeller manufacture according to KiwiRail Group General Manager Todd Moyle. Having tighter manufacturing tolerances for large fixed pitch propellers is an important step in ferry safety and is a key recommendation in the report. Kiwiral agreed with the TAIC’s finding that the fracture which caused the propeller to come off was the result of bending forces. Their own extensive investigation, led by the international engineering consultancy firm Aurecon, concluded the likely cause of those forces was an irregularity in the propeller blade due to the manufacturing process used. Kiwirail, however, did not accept TAIC’s view that they did not follow the manufacturer’s advice on the best way to fit the propellers and that if we had, some of the conditions that contributed to the shaft’s failure would have been less likely to have happened. The proposed method of fitting the propellers was impractical because of the very long shaft fitted. The method Kiwirail did use to fit the propellers was discussed with the manufacturer, who accepted it as an alternative. KiwiRail has accepted TAIC’s recommendation on document management practices and record keeping around the fitting process. KiwiRail has already implemented the recommended change by ensuring significant modifications follow Project Management Office procedures, which include strong governance and good record keeping practices.Upload News