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M/V Matanuska to be Drydocked for Prop Repair


December 29, 2004

Ketchikan, Alaska - The M/V Matanuska will be taken out of service briefly next month so that damaged blades on its port side propeller can be replaced. The ferry is scheduled to go into drydock in Ketchikan on Monday, January 10th and return to service on Wednesday, January 12th. The repairs will require cancellation of a round trip sailing to Bellingham, Washington, the Alaska Marine Highway System's southern terminus.

jpg M/V Matanuska

The M/V Matanuska at the Ketchikan Shipyard a night in November 2003...
File Photo by Carl Thompson

Captain John Falvey, AMHS General Manager, said an investigation is underway to try to determine how, where, and when the damage to the prop occurred. Two adjacent blades of the controllable pitch prop have damage and loss of metal on their tips, which causes a vibration during operation.

"We are operating the Matanuska safely within Coast Guard parameters for speed and vibration," Falvey said. "However, it is important to repair the prop as soon as possible. We believe that taking it into the yard on the 10th offers the least disruption to the schedule. We have the replacement blades and other parts on hand in the Ketchikan warehouse and do not expect to have any complications installing them."

The Matanuska will make a trip to Prince Rupert, BC and back to Ketchikan before going into the shipyard, and will make another round trip to Prince Rupert after coming out of the yard. It will then continue on its regular northbound schedule from Ketchikan.

The M/V Matanuska was built by Puget Sound Bridge & Dry Dock Company of Seattle and began service in 1963. In 1968 the vessel was lengthened and renovated. It now carries 500 passengers, and provides 6 four-berth, 21 three-berth, and 80 two-berth cabins. One two-berth cabin is wheelchair accessible.

The Matanuska is 408 feet long, with capacity for 88 vehicles (20' lengths), and has a service speed of 16.5 knots. Passenger services include a cafeteria, gift shop, cocktail lounge, solarium, and forward observation lounge.


Source of News:

Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities
Web Site


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