Norderaue delay “no problem” say owners

Norderaue is third double-ender for WDR. Norderaue is third double-ender for WDR.

The new 75.9m monohull ferry 'Norderaue' has gone into North Frisian island service two months later than planned but a month earlier than its official naming in June, writes Tom Todd.

Delivery of the 3,318gt newbuilding was originally tipped for the end of last year by builders Neptun Werft in Rostock. That was much earlier than the contracted completion in late February this year, which also did not happen. Fitting-out delays were also reported before Norderaue was handed over April 19th and finally entered service on May 5th.

Owners WDR (the Wyker Dampschiffs-Reederei ) rescheduled the official naming of the ship for June 8th in Wyk on the island of Föhr where the company is based.

Commenting on delays WDR Managing Director Axel Meynköhn mentioned the cruise-ship related workload currently borne by Meyer Group subsidiary Neptun. And in comments to Maritime Journal another WDR spokesman praised the “outstanding quality” of the Norderaue. He also said “the somewhat delayed delivery was not a problem for ferry operations” because the WDR’s ferry Rungholt was still on hand to cover. It is being offered for sale.

Norderaue is now operating between the North Frisian islands of Föhr and Amrum in the Wadden Sea shallow water area off the German Bight coast of Schleswig-Holstein.

Norderaue is a modified version of the series prototype Uthlande, which was delivered by Sietas Werft in 2010 and the Schleswig-Holstein delivered by Neptun in 2011. The new ship will carry 1,200 passengers like Schleswig-Holstein but will be the first WDR ship with an expanded Ro-Ro car deck for four trucks side by side on 280 lane m.

Norderaue is 16.4m wide and draws maximum 1.9m. WDR said earlier its diesel-mechanical propulsion system comprised four Caterpillar 3508C Series main engines of 578 bkW/1200rpm – two at each end – and four Voith16R5-EC/100 propeller drives –again, two at each end. The ship also has three Caterpillar C7.1 auxiliaries. Total engine output is put at 2,312kW and speed at 12 knots. The fuel used is eco-friendly, low sulphur marine gas oil, WDR reported.

Like Schleswig-Holstein, Norderaue is designed to meet the requirements of German eco-standards RAL-UZ 141 and RAL-UZ 110 and is on target to win Blauer Engel certification covering Environmentally Friendly Ship Design and Environmentally Friendly Ship Operation.

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