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Arahura Goes for $9M Refit

23 April 2008

Arahura Goes for $9M Refit

Interislander ferry Arahura is going for a major refit. The $9 Million investment will see her transporting passengers, cars, commercial vehicles and rail freight on the scenic journey across the Cook Strait between Wellington and Picton for several years to come.

Her last day of operations will be Sunday 27th April and shortly after she will leave for Singapore shipyard Drydocks World. When Arahura returns at the end of August she will be able to carry more commercial vehicles and rail freight.

“Commercial traffic has been a real success story for us with greater demand than ever and rail freight is an important service,” comments Seamus O'Sullivan, Interislander's group general manager. “Arahura is one of only a few rail and passenger ferries in the world and for twenty five years has spearheaded the vital link across the Cook Strait. She was so well designed and built that with the forthcoming changes she will meet future market demands for some time.”

The work will include changes to the lower decks and reduction of some upper deck accommodation, allowing Arahura to continue to carry passengers beyond 2011. The increased numbers of commercial vehicle drivers will be catered for with new dining, rest and sleeping facilities. Drivers will also enjoy more truck turning space and a wider entrance and exit.

All crew will be fully employed during the refit, with staff rotation between the remaining two vessels allowing for high levels of training and development of skills. Crew quarters on the refitted Arahura will also be improved.

In the passenger areas, there will be a new cinema and bar / cafeteria, plus revised open areas. Enhanced safety features will include the latest safety chute evacuation system and life rafts, plus a new fast rescue boat and mesh covered rescue platform which could come to the aid of others.

“We have timed the refit to coincide with our winter off peak,” states Mr O’Sullivan. “The slightly reduced timetable can easily be accommodated by our other two ferries and the new and improved Arahura will be back with us well before the next tourist season.”

More information is available from


Note to editors:
Arahura Current Facts and figures
Built: Denmark
Service History: Interislander from new
Flag: New Zealand
Port of Registry: Wellington

Length: 148 metres
Breadth: 20.5 metres

20 knots (equivalent to 37 kilometres per hour)

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