Underwater survey work has commenced in Cowes Harbour in preparation for a new piled layby berth, which Red Funnel is building on the eastern side of the channel for use by its new freight ferry when it enters service next spring.
Investigations will be carried out on and below the sea bed and the results will be used to inform the detailed design of the layby berth, which the ship will use whilst waiting for the company’s main berth in East Cowes to become vacant.
A total of three boreholes will be drilled into the seabed to a maximum depth of 30 meters to assess the ground conditions until the 30-meter mark is achieved or if hard rock is detected. All the drilling work will be completed from a 10m x 10m barge and samples will be sent away to a laboratory for testing. The final design is expected to be signed-off this summer with construction starting in the autumn.
The name of the new UK built freight ferry will be revealed at a special keel laying ceremony at Cammell Laird’s yard in Birkenhead on Thursday 31 May 2018.