The ferry Blue Star Ithaki made its final visit to the island of Syros on October 25. It is now in Piraeus, making preparations to sail for Canada.
The schedule for replacement of Princess of Acadia was to have the selected vessel in Canada by July 31, 2014 and have it fully refitted and ready for service by December 31, 2014. Allowing the early spring for training and handover to operators, it was to enter service March 31, 2015.
That schedule slipped, due to availability of the replacement vessel, and it is now due in Halifax in November. It will tie up at pier 9 for an estimated four month refit, which will include a heads-off engine rebuild. It has four Wartsila engines, and the manufacturer has a major service depot here.
The Blue Star Ithaki, flies the Greek flag, and is owned by Blue Star Ferries SA of Athens. Built by Daewoo Heavy Industries in Korea, it has a capacity of 1500 passengers, and has been running Piraeus to Tinos, Syros and Mykonos for fourteen years.
Meanwhile Princess of Acadia passed Halifax (which no longer has drydock capacity) October 19 en route Méchins, QC for repairs to its bow thruster. The thruster has not been operational for many months, but the ship has been able to berth without too much difficulty, although a miniature tug has been stationed in Digby just in case. However with winter coming on, it will need an operational thruster.