Second E-Flexer float out
Stena Line has achieved another milestone in its fleet investment program with the ‘float out’ ceremony of the second vessel in its new generation E-Flexer series.
The second vessel will be named Stena Edda and follows the Scandinavian heritage decided for the five new vessels that are being constructed at the Avic Weihai Shipyard in China.
Stena Edda is scheduled to enter service on the Belfast-Liverpool route in spring 2020. This is the second of three new E-Flexer vessels bound for the Irish Sea during 2020 and 2021 and represents a significant multi-million investment by Stena Line in the region. The ‘float out’ ceremony started at 13.18 hrs local Weihai time and at 18.00 Stena Edda floated out of the dock. These timings were chosen especially because 18 is a number of good fortune in China.
Stena Line CEO Niclas Mårtensson said: “It’s very exciting to follow the building process and this is another very important milestone in our rolling construction programme. This investment underscores our commitment to our operations on the Irish Sea and our determination to deliver the best possible freight and travel experience for our customers. This is a very exciting time for our business and I’m proud that as Europe’s largest ferry company, Stena Line continues help shape the industry for the next generation of freight and leisure passengers.”
At 215 metres, all three vessels being built for the Irish Sea will be larger than today’s standard RoPax vessels and will provide freight capacity of 3,100 lane metres and the space to carry 120 cars and 1,000 passengers and crew. For Belfast – Liverpool capacity will increase by almost 20% compared to today. The next generation vessel is also well in line with the Stena Line strategic commitment to Sustainability and will be extremely fuel efficient to reduce emissions. They will also feature a digitally enhanced customer experience.
In addition to the three Irish Sea bound E-Flexer vessels, Stena Line has also ordered a further two E-Flexer RoPax vessels with a larger design, to be deployed within Stena Line’s network in 2022. These larger ships will be 240 meters long with a total freight capacity of 3,600 lane metres, and passenger capacity of 1,200. Stena Lines sister company Stena RoRo is managing all the E-Flexer building projects that are ongoing on Avic Weihai Shipyard.
By Jake Frith
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