Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 7th 2018 Contents A6 news
Saturday, April 7, 2018
Now cooling pump on T&T Spirit faulty
The return of the passenger ferry,
the T&T Spirit, to service the do-
mestic seabridge now seems to be
indefinite as the vessel’s cooling
water pump is now defective.
This was yesterday disclosed
by National Infrastructure Devel-
opment Company’s (Nidco) chair-
man, Herbert George during a
telephone interview yesterday.
The vessel was scheduled to un-
dergo its final sea trial on Wednes-
day, however, it was discovered
then that the cooling water pump
was faulty. A previous report
stated that the ferry’s radar system
was malfunctioning and delayed its
return to service.
“They are working on that at the
moment...I have no further infor-
mation but hopefully next week we
will be doing a joint media briefing
or release to inform the public as
to its status,” George said.
As for the T&T Express, the
other passenger ferry which was
taken out of service in mid-Febru-
ary, George said that it would not
be back out on the domestic sea-
bridge for a while as it remains in
dry dock for repairs.
He said the new replacement
vessel, the Galleons Passage, which
is en route to T&T, is currently
still docked at Honolulu, Hawaii.
George said there was a bit of delay
to enter as the vessel waiting in line
to enter the waters of the US ter-
“Yes, it stopped off at Hawaii and
is there in dock undergoing (fuel)
bunkering. What would have hap-
pened was that when it arrived at
the edge of territorial waters last
Friday they were seeking permis-
sion to enter so the vessel was
queued for entry and that took a
while,” George said.
“Eventually, they go the clear-
ance to enter the territorial waters
and then took some time again be-
cause they had to go through US
Customs, so it is still in Honolulu,
and it is docked there for bunker-
ing,” he said.
From Hawaii, the vessel will
then proceed to Acapulco in Mex-
ico for refuelling then transiting
through the Panama Canal.
“So far...the Galleons Passage
is on time for its arrival in early
May but when it has to go through
the Panama Canal it would take a
while as there would be a line for
it to go through the channel. So at
that point, we cannot say for sure
how long it will take but if any is-
sues arise the public would be ap-
prised,” George said.
After the vessel passes through
the Panama Canal it will stop-over
in Cuba for alterations over a 10-day
period. These alternations include
a full canopy over sundeck, instal-
lation of canopies over-exposed
sections of vehicle deck and instal-
lation of washroom facilities at sun-
deck level – all in accordance with
details as agreed to with the buyer.
The vessel, which was purchased
for US$18.2 million had been
scheduled to arrive in T&T by
Caribbean Airlines has been con-
tracted by the Port Authority to
transport ferry passengers to and
from Tobago for the fee of $50 one-
way. A Liat aircraft has also been
wet-leased to assist in transporting
the passengers as there are no pas-
senger fast ferries in operation.
Nidco: Fire on
started on the
Preliminary investigations as to
what caused the fire onboard the
water taxi, Trini Flash, while on
its return voyage to Trinidad on
March 27, have revealed that it
started around the silencer of one
of the boats exhaust pipes.
A total of 63 people were res-
cued by the crew of the Cabo Star
and taken to Tobago.
However, for the actual cause of
the fire would not be known until
the root cause analysis is completed.
Nidco’s chairman Herbert George
said samples of the exhaust will
be taken for forensic testing as the
investigations into the cause of the
“We already have some the-
ories which have raised ques-
tions. The fire occurred around
the silencer of the exhaust,
which is big barrel coming from
the engine. It is around that
insulation, that is wrapped,
caught on fire,” George said.
“The root cause analysis will now
establish why did it happen and
all these things have to be tested
where samples will be taken.
When all answers are in, then one
can pronounce on what caused the
fire and we will have the rules and
regulations to treat with,” he said.
Asked whether or not the Trini
Flash upon its return to the seas
will return in assisting on the do-
mestic seabridge, George said it
was uncertain at this time.
“Once the cause of the fire is
established and the fire damage is
repaired it would be inspected and
certified safe or fit for purpose...
once back in service, its standard
route is San Fernando to Port-of-
There will be no sailing of the
cargo vessel, the Cabo Star today,
according to the Port Authority.
According to a release, the 28
passengers with vehicles from
Port-of-Spain that were required
to travel are asked to instead
bring their vehicles tomorrow to
be transported on the Cabo Star.
Check-in of vehicles starts at 9 am
for the sailing at noon.
The vessel will sail
from Tobago at 11 pm.
The vehicles of passengers with
confirmed tickets (T&T Ex-
press/T&T Spirit) will be accom-
modated on the daily sailing of
the Cabo Star, and all ticket hold-
ers will be shuttled via PTSC to the
Piarco International Airport and
the ANR International Airport,
accordingly at no additional cost.
T&T Guardian was told that the
cancellation for today’s sailing is
for “routine and regular” servic-
ing of the cargo vessel.
No Cabo Star
Flashback: T&T Spirit docked in Chaguaramas.
PICTURE EDISON BOODOOSINGH
A map illustrating the location of the Galleons Passage and its route to Acapulco, Mexico en route to Port-of-Spain.
PICTURE COURTESY NIDCO
Links Archive April 6th 2018 April 8th 2018 Navigation Previous Page Next Page