LYNHER is currently undergoing her five yearly refit at A&P’s dry dock facilities in Falmouth, with Tamar Crossings and A&P staff working together to ensure the programme can be carried out in accordance with the Government’s social distancing requirements.
Following an initial wait for the right wind and sea conditions for the six hour journey, LYNHER was towed to Falmouth on 25 March. Work began the following day, with the blasting and priming of the upper decks and vehicle deck now completed. The prows at both ends of the ferry have also been removed to the dock bottom for inspection and repair.
Initial surveys of LYNHER indicate that a more extensive package of remedial work needs to be carried out on the prows and outer bottom of the vessel than during the previous two ferry refits.
The Government’s guidance on social distancing means there is a significant reduction in the number of people who can work in the engine room and accommodation areas at any one time. This will inevitably have an impact on the progress of the refit which was originally due to be completed by the middle of May.
After reviewing the programme with staff from Tamar Crossings, it has been agreed to extend the completion date to the end of May to enable all those involved to carry out their work safely. This date will be kept under constant review, with further changes agreed if required.
The service will continue to be provided by the two remaining ferries during this period.
While we recognise the potential inconvenience of extending the programme for service users, the health and safety of the workforce are paramount to both organisations. There are unprecedented times and we are working closely with A&P to minimise the impact of this situation.
LYNHER is one of three ferries operated by Tamar Crossings which provides a vital 24 hour chain ferry service in all weathers for up to 8,000 vehicles a day, including emergency vehicles, and 1,500 pedestrians each day, 365 days a year. The Torpoint Ferry is believed to be the world’s biggest and busiest chain ferry service, and is the UK’s busiest inland waterway ferry crossing.
Achieving this service delivery requires a significant planned maintenance programme. While the majority of maintenance is carried out while the vessels are afloat or during off peak periods while an individual vessel is not on scheduled service, some maintenance activities have to be carried out during refits in dry dock conditions.
LYNHER’s refit includes:
• repainting the vessels both above and below the waterline – this will include using more environmentally friendly paint systems than were available in the past, and is the opportunity to rationalise the range of paints which significantly reduces the levels of potential waste.
• replacement of systems and equipment that are becoming obsolete and unsupported by spares, including replacement of major components within the sewage treatment plants and updating the power management systems for the diesel generators to the latest generation.
• completion of an extensive package of electrical work required because of the age of the vessel (it is now nearly 15 years old)
We will continue to provide regular updates on the Tamar Crossings website and social media channels.