In accordance with Québec’s Maritime Strategy, which incorporates policies for low pollution on its waters, FA Gauthier the first of three Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) fuelled vessels was completed and will take up her duty in the lower St Lawrence for Société des traversiers du Québec. She is said to be the first ferry in North America to be fuelled by LNG and replaces the Camille Marcoux 3,283,’74 on the Matane–Baie-Comeau-Godbout route.
FA Gauthier was delivered from the Fincantieri yard, Castellammare di Stabia, Naples, and has a diesel electric system with four dual fuel diesel power generators that can run on either LNG or marine diesel oil. A good looking vessel, she has a service speed of 20 knots, 133ms length with a capacity of 800 passengers and 180 vehicles. Ice-strengthened, she should be able to operate year-round.
The next two ferries for the same company, are sisters who will work the Tadoussac–Baie-Sainte-Catherine crossing. They are building at the Davie Shipbuilding yard Lauzon, Quebec. The first, still named Hull 723 launched in July, is claimed to be the first ferry actually built in North America to be LNG fuelled. She is to be in service at the year end. At 92 metres long, the vessels will have 625 lane metres capacity across two decks, allowing the transport of over 110 vehicles including trailers.
This time at Damen’s yard, Galati, Romania, the second new ship for service in Newfoundland-Labrador waters, Legionnaire, was also launched in July. She is the sister of Veteran launched earlier this year (see Ferry World June and March). Legionnaire will serve Bell Isle from Newfoundland at a service speed of 14 knots carrying 64 car equivalents and 200 passengers wthin her 81 ms and 17m beam. She too is diesel-electric with three Caterpillar motors driving her generators.