New Ferry Enters Service in Auckland
Incat Crowther is pleased to announce the delivery of Te Kotuku, a 34m Catamaran Passenger Ferry for Fullers Group Ltd, the operator of the Auckland ferry network.
The vessel, constructed at New Zealand builder Q-West, is the result of a thorough review of the network requirements, in which Incat Crowther worked closely with Fullers to develop an optimized vessel that suits the network requirements and existing infrastructure as well as offering operational flexibility. Te Kotuku is a modern, advanced addition to the Fullers Group Ltd fleet and joins recently refurbished Incat Crowther-designed vessels Adventurer, Wanderer and Takahè.
Te Kotuku’s 400 passengers can be accommodated over two decks, in a mix of indoor and outdoor spaces. The main deck seats 192 passengers in its main cabin. A café is located at the rear of the cabin, between a pair of large doorways designed to help facilitate fast boarding and egress. Luggage racks have been fitted adjacent to the entry doors for convenience. Lift-up seats and a curtain fitted to port, provide for a sick bay in case of emergency. Racks for 14 bicycles have been fitted to the aft end of the main deck, alongside two toilets, one of which is handicap-accessible.
A wide set of stairs leads to the upper deck, where 94 passengers are seated on an open deck protected by a fabric awning. Further bar facilities and a pair of WCs are forward of this, as well as a passenger lounge space accommodating 44 passengers. Additional capacity exists for 70 standing passengers which can be accommodated on the main deck.
At the forward end of the upper deck is an asymmetric wheelhouse which has been designed in consideration of the operational requirements. The frequently used starboard wing control station is enclosed for protection from the elements. Conversely, the port side is dedicated to crew access via stairs to the foredeck. The foredeck has been configured to carry palletised cargo, with a Palfinger deck crane fitted for loading and unloading.
Passenger boarding is enhanced by the fitment of large side gates on the main deck, as well as hydraulic hinging articulated ramps mounted on the transom port and starboard. These ramps are designed to integrate with the existing shore based infrastructure, and offer a fast turnaround time.
Te Kotuku is powered by a pair of Cummins QSK 38 main engines, each producing 1044kW at 1800rpm, giving a service speed of 26 knots. The vessel has been fitted with a dry exhaust systems which, along with the engine room air outlets, will exit high above the upper deck. This configuration, which reduces fumes and noise in passenger areas, is typical of vessels in the Fullers fleet. Maneuverability has been enhanced by a bow thruster in the port hull.