B+V: Quick Turnaround Key to Success

Friday, March 19, 2004
The factor time becomes more and more important for repair and conversion shipyards to hold their own on the international market. Blohm + Voss Repair GmbH has recorded success with an efficiency has been continuously improved, especially to ensure extremely short work procedures.

An example is the repair of the fire damage on the Superfast III. In only 71 days Blohm + Voss Repair was able to complete the job, where others had calculated a repair time of five months, i.e. 150 days.

Another example for the speedy activities of Blohm + Voss Repair is the repair and conversion work on the cruise liner Black Watch in November 2003. As a cruise scheduled to be started directly after the overhaul had already been booked out, there was no leeway. In only seven days Blohm + Voss Repair had to carry out the repairs and install the balconies. The shipping line Fred. Olsen Cruises had the balconies built by a subcontractor and the yard was responsible for project management. The repair comprised steel work on the hull, work on the pipe system, repair of the bow thrusters and overhauling the fans in the upper engine room casing. The propeller blades as well as the coupling between the main engine and the thrust bearing were renewed. The workers embarked already in Southampton, so that the work had already been prepared when the ship called at Hamburg.

Routine work on cruise liners is often planned two years ahead. Blohm + Voss Repair profits from complex repair and conversion projects, which have been completed on time for years now. On cruise liners, mainly scheduled maintenance work is carried out. The amount of repair work is rather small. The short repair periods calculated by Blohm + Voss Repair GmbH are possible due to especially flexible structures. Also in quality, safety, and environmental protection, Blohm + Voss Repair GmbH has set up structures ensuring the highest standard. Since December 2003, Blohm + Voss Repair GmbH, a nationally and internationally operating company, has a certified IMS (Integrated Management System) comprising these fields as well as risk analyses. With this, Blohm + Voss Repair proves that modern yards are able to meet the high environmental requirements while observing the work and safety regulations in an economic way.

With the IMS certification, the standards of the following three rules and regulations are combined into a modern management system:

§ ISO 9001: 2000 - Quality management systems

§ ISO 14001: 1996 - Environmental management systems

§ OHSAS18001: 1999 - Work safety management systems

Blohm + Voss Repair GmbH has three floating docks and one dry dock at its disposal. Up to ten ships may be berthed at the quays and in the docks at the same time. There are only few yards world-wide being able to dock ships of almost any size such as the Queen Mary 2.

Part of the core business of Blohm + Voss Repair are container ships, ferries, cruise liners and North Sea shuttle tankers. As in the years before, the yard is prepared to carry out any kind of ship repairs, although LPG carriers, cruise liners, large ferries and mega yachts are gaining importance.

Of equal importance is the mutual trust between the customers and the yard, which has to be proved over and over again. Proof of such a mutual trust is the fact that some ships regularly call at Blohm + Voss. An example is the Maxim Gorkyi, which has been calling at Hamburg for seven years in succession to have annual maintenance work carried out. In addition to the maintenance work, repairs and modernizations as well as steel work are carried out each year. At present, the work to be performed in 2004 is being planned. The great advantage of such a continuity is that the engineers and workers have been familiar with the ships for a long time. The owners can rely on the expertise of the staff and Blohm + Voss Repair is able to make well founded recommendations for repairs and modernizations. Another recurring customer is the Saga Rosa, which was modernized in December 2003. The work comprised the rebuilding of the complete hotel area as well as work on the lifeboats, the propellers and the flooding gates.

Last year, the Prinsesse Ragnhild was docked for 41 days for a general overhaul of the auxiliary engines and the starboard engine. In addition, the bathrooms and cabins were renovated and the stern was provided with a duck tail to improve stability. Finally, the ship was re-coated.

Other ships berthed in the repair docks of Blohm + Voss Repair in the year 2003 were the two mega yachts Lady Moura and Golden Odyssey, both once built by Blohm + Voss, and the cruise liners A’Rosa Blu and Mona Lisa. In addition, LNG tankers such as the Matthew with a capacity of 135,000 m³ and container ships such as the Cap Vincent were docked at Blohm + Voss Repair. On February 24 this year, the container ship PERU was floated into dock 10. Work on the sterntube seal was carried out, the ship's skin was repaired and the bow thruster was replaced.

Outlook

On March 20, the BANASA, a combined passenger/car ferry of Comarit, Morocco, is expected to arrive. To improve the stability of the ship, sponsons are attached on port and starboard and a so-called duck tail is fitted to the stern. About four weeks are required for the work. In addition, general and classification work will be performed.

In the time form May to June, the BERKANE - also owned by Comarit - will dock at Blohm + Voss Repair. Besides the installation of a sprinkler system in the passenger and crew area, sponsons and a duck tail will be attached.

In April, the A'Rosa Blu" will be converted at Blohm + Voss in only two weeks. Thereupon, she will be operated as a cruise liner by the Rostock-Warnemünde based shipping line Seetours. In September, two Scandlines ferries are expected to arrive at Blohm + Voss Repair. The Prins Joachim and Kronprins Frederik will be re-engined.

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