Highlands & Islands

'Complications' in repair of CalMac ferry MV Clansman

CalMac ferry at Oban Image copyright Calmac
Image caption CalMac says it has made arrangements to minimise disruption to west coast ferry services

Complications during repairs to a Caledonian MacBrayne (CalMac) ferry means the boat will be out of action for longer than expected.

Parts of the MV Clansman's propulsion system have had to be sent to Denmark for specialist repair.

CalMac said it was taking steps to minimise disruption to its west coast services.

The measures include keeping the ferry MV Hebrides in operation. It was scheduled to enter dry dock.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency has agreed to three week extension to the boat's operating licence.

'Impact adversely'

CalMac's managing director Robbie Drummond said: "We are facing a highly regrettable situation that we need to manage as best we can with the vessels we have.

"Our first priority is to continue to provide lifeline service to island communities."

He added: "The overrun of our annual vessel dry dock schedule into the summer season is regrettable and we realise that this set of circumstance is going to impact adversely on some communities which we apologise for.

"However, under the circumstances, the timetable arrangements we have now put in place for the period of disruption are the best options we have available."

CalMac will be operating to an amended timetable until the return of all major vessels expected by 31 May.

The company said the major changes were:

  • Ardrossan-Brodick: MV Caledonian Isles delivering single vessel timetable from 26 April supplemented by MV Isle of Arran delivering shared timetable between Arran and Islay
  • Ardrossan-Campbeltown: start of summer service postponed
  • Islay services: MV Finlaggan delivering single vessel timetable from 26 April supplemented by MV Isle of Arran delivering shared timetable between Islay and Arran
  • Mallaig-Armadale: MV Loch Fyne until 24 April then MV Loch Fyne and MV Loch Bhrusda
  • Mallaig-Lochboisdale: this sailing will be cancelled with the MV Hebridean Isles providing a service from Lochboisdale to Oban

CalMac said it believed the arrangements would cause the least disruption possible.

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