Thursday, October 7, 2010

Newest Canadian - Algoma Discovery

1. Algoma Discovery enters Halifax on a blustery day.

2. In control of tugs, Algoma Discovery approaches pier 31.

3. As built, Malinska was fitted with four cranes. She is entering Iroquois Lock on the St.Lawrence Seaway, September 1, 1997.

It is expected that Algoma Discovery will be inducted into Canadian registry in the next few days. It arrived in Halifax this afternoon two years after it was acquired by Algoma Central Corporation with the intention of bringing it under the Canadian flag.

In 2008 Algoma acquired three ships from Viken, which were on Fednav charter. The three were Seaway maximum size ocean going vessels. In February of this year Algoma announced that the shps were to start five year time charters to Seaway Marine Transport (a joint operation of Algoma and Upper Lakes Shipping) as soon as they had completed the Fednav charters and could return to Canada. Due to their age it is assumed that they will spend much of their time on the Lakes in the domestic grain and bulk trades.

Algoma Discovery is the second of the ships to become Canadian. Algoma Guardian also did so in Halifax- see Shipfax post July 20 - Algoma Spirit will presumably follow in due course.

Algoma's plans to use these ships go back several years, but the elimination of the 25% duty on foreign ships will certainly make the move much more profitable for Algoma (see Shipfax post of October 4)

Algoma Discovery was built in 1987 by Brodogradiliste "3 Maj" in Rijelka (now Croatia), as the 23,306 gross ton geared bulker Malinska. It was equipped with three 25 ton and one 12 ton cranes, and began trading to the Great Lakes in season. It initially flew the Yugoslav flag, migrated through Malta and became Croatian.

In 1997 it and its sisters were acquired by Viken Lakers of Norway and continued to trade to the Lakes. It was renamed Daviken. It became Algoma Discovery in 2008 when acquired by Algoma and transferred to the Bahamas flag. You will also note that the cranes have been removed, since they will not be needed in Great Lakes bulk trades.

Algoma Discovery has made the news at least twice in her short career with Algoma. On September 25, 2009 she grounded in the River Weser, near Brake, Germany. She had to lighter off some of her cargo before eight tugs pulled her free. She was carrying 27,000 tonnes of steel coil from Bremen to Ravenna, Italy.

On February 5, 2010 she ran ashore off St-Laurent, Ile d'Orléans, Quebec, in heavy ice. She was pulled free on a rising tide by two tugs. On that trip she was bound from Quebec to Norway with a cargo of nickel and titanium. She caused considerable controversy at the time due to the sensitivity of residents to a planned LNG terminus on the opposite shore. (See Shipfax February 5, 2010.)

Both incidents were attributed to technical problems. When she comes under the TLC of Canadian crews and spends more of her time in fresh water, it is expected that these issues will be ironed out.
Update The ship was registered in St.Catharines on Friday, October 8.

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