Ships Of CalMac - Fleet News

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PLEASE NOTE: the Fleet News pages are no longer updated on a regular basis. For news updates as movements happen, go to the SoC Forum where news is reported very frequently - you can even report it yourself!
31/07/09 Jupiter again saw disruptions this morning and it was 1020 before she was able to start her day. Prior to this the Ali Cat carried out the timetable on a passenger only basis at 0920, after completing her own runs that is. Saturn missed her last sailing of the day and Loch Tarbert was unable to get in at Claonaig on her 1430 ex Lochranza. She then returned to service at 1715.

29/07/09 Jupiter was off service at Dunoon between 1350 and 1440 due to a technical problem, while earlier in the morning Saturn commenced her sailings with the 0900 ex Ardrossan.

27/07/09 More foul weather today and Saturn was again off following her 0715 ex Brodick. She returned to Arran with a 1730 sailing from Ardrossan.
Elsewhere Lochnevis was unable to get in at Muck on her second run of the day.

26/07/09 Heavy weather made Loch Tarbert fall foul this morning. She was only able to sail on the 1045 ex Lochranza and after returning to Arran it was 1430 before she was to sail again. Saturn also suffered and she only managed to sail at 1615.
Loch Riddon's ramp was repaired and fully operational by 1000 this morning and she was able to return to full drive-through working.

25/07/09 Isle of Cumbrae was repaired and returned to service and Loch Riddon then came off duty for ramp repairs this afternoon. She too returned to service from 1945 but was sailing single ended.

24/07/09 Well, after a week or so of fun and games, life returned to normal with a few mere technical related issues to report. Saturn missed her 1615 sailing, while Isle of Cumbrae came off the Portavadie run at 1310.

23/07/09 Lord of the Isles returned to service with the 1540 sailing to the Outer Isles this afternoon, albeit with her carpets ripped up in the cafeteria. Hebridean Isles left Oban to return south and then carried out the 1800 sailing to Kennacraig, but from Port Askaig.
Over the next few days there will be some disruptions on the Sound of Harris route due to low tides. See the Official CalMac website for full details.

22/07/09 Following the inward sailing from Castlebay and Lochboisdale this morning, Hebridean Isles carried out an extra sailing to Colonsay and Port Askaig (as used to happen in the spring and autumn timetables of years gone by). She left Oban at 1530 and left Islay on the return sailing at 1915.

21/07/09 Isle of Mull arrived back in Oban at 0400, having sailed through the night on the Coll - Tiree run. Unfortunately she was too late back to avoid missing her morning Mull runs, so Hebridean Isles stepped in and carried out the 0745 and 0950 round trips to Craignure. Isle of Mull resumed her roster with the 1155 ex Oban which in turn allowed Hebridean Isles to venture even further outwith her usual sphere of operations by taking the 1540 sailing to Lochboisdale and Castlebay. Lord of the Isles was able to return to Oban this afternoon to allow repairs to continue.
Isle of Arran once again carried out an additional sailing back to Kennacraig this evening, leaving Port Askaig at 2030. While the single ship roster is in operation, the vessel is based at Kennacraig overnight in order to carry out the main roster, with departures at 0700, 1300 and 1800.

20/07/09 What an eventful summer this is turning out to be... With Lord of the Isles unserviceable in Oban, thanks to her sprinkler system deciding to discharge its load all over the cafeteria, more vessel switching has been taking place to cover all routes. Her inward sailing from Coll and Tiree was carried out by Clansman, on her way in from Lochboisdale and Barra, while traffic on the morning sailing to Coll and Tiree was taken, somewhat late, by Isle of Mull at 2025 after she had completed her own Mull sailings.
Islay again drew the short straw today following the return of Isle of Arran yesterday. Hebridean Isles left this evening and made for Colonsay with traffic diverted via Kennacraig and then carried the regular inward sailing to Oban, albeit late. Lord of the Isles had to leave Oban at 1710 in order to free up an overnight berth and made for Craignure where she berthed on the south side of the pier.

19/07/09 Isle of Lewis returned to Stornoway following her additional 0130 sailing from Ullapool and then left again at 1430 to a rapturous send-off as she carried out the first ever timetabled Sunday sailing out of Stornoway. As expected, there were a number of protesters who wished to see the enforced prohibition of travel to one and all, but the mood at the pier was one of relief as the Isle of Lewis backed away with a blast on her horn.
Isle of Arran meanwhile finally got back to Stornoway at around 0300 this morning, unloaded traffic and then set sail light for Port Askaig, arriving at 1640.
Following her trip to Port Askaig last night, Lord of the Isles got back into Oban at 0200 this morning. She was then in service throughout the course of the day, sailing to Coll and Tiree and then to Colonsay and back, but this evening a fault in her sprinkler system led to the cafeteria being flooded. She is consequently out of service.

18/07/09 Isle of Arran reached Stornoway at 0815 and then carried out two return sailings to Ullapool, leaving at 1130 and 2135, returning at 1530 and 0030. Isle of Lewis was repaired and returned to service at 2200 with another additional sailing, following her relief vessel across the Minch. Hebrides also carried out an additional sailing between Uig and Tarbert during the evening in order to clear traffic and eventually finished over 2 hours late.
With Isle of Arran away from home, Islay traffic was building up to the point where Lord of the Isles was called upon to provide an emergency sailing from Oban to Port Askaig at 1900. Hebridean Isles diverted her 1800 sailing to Port Askaig in order to provide a return sailing at 2110 (and also clear the linkspan to allow the Oban ferry to offload her traffic).

17/07/09 It turns out that the ramp related technical problems seen in the last couple of days were just the tip of the iceberg (forgive the rather unfortunate cliche). While on her 1025 sailing from Ullapool to Stornoway this morning, Isle of Lewis suffered a major breakdown in one of her engines. She completed the crossing at a reduced speed, arriving a mere 5 minute before her scheduled second departure time, at 1345. Traffic was unloaded and the ferry remained in port for the rest of the day.
Given the recent announcement of the long-overdue start of Sunday sailings, the breakdown prompted the traditionalists of Lewis to claim divine intervention... Sweeping that aside, vessels were redeployed and provided additional sailings to ensure that all the traffic got to its destination. Hebrides provided additional sailings from Uig to Tarbert through the night and further south, Isle of Arran was taken off the Islay run at 2025 in order to go north.

Elsewhere, Jupiter's starboard ramp was fixed while on Bute, the Rothesay gangway broke down and led to delays for Argyle and Bute.

16/07/09 More ramp trouble beset another vessel today. This time the victim was Hebridean Isles and she finally finished just over an hour late.

15/07/09 Following the yacht rescue yesterday off Tiree, it was Saturn's turn to act Thunderbird 1 today, responding to another yacht in trouble. This one took place during her 1615 sailing to Brodick.
Further up the Clyde, a rare sight was noted at Dunoon today; a failure on Jupiter's starboard side ramp saw the oldest vessel in the fleet berthing at Dunoon the wrong way round in order to land her seldom-used port side ramp.

14/07/09 Clansman was called to assist a yacht in distress today. As a result she was 35 minutes late leaving Tiree.

13/07/09 Hebrides was delayed on her 0940 sailing from Uig by a rope around one of her propellers. She eventually got away at about 1100 and then proceeded to run late for the rest of the day.

12/07/09 It may be July, supposedly the middle of summer for crying out loud, but heavy weather returned to the north today. Saturn was the only casualty of the day with her morning Arran runs being cancelled. Her traffic was able to be accommodated on the Caledonian Isles which suffered no such disruptions.

04/07/09 Following the replacement of her liferaft, Loch Riddon was back up to her full passenger complement today.

03/07/09 Heavy traffic was the order of the day today, with many of the larger vessels running over an hour late by this evening. Isle of Mull, Clansman, Hebrides and Isle of Lewis were noted examples!

02/07/09 Loch Riddon was back in service today, albeit with a reduced passenger capacity. It turns out the problem was with a liferaft in the end. A few miles north, technical problems also saw the Ali Cat miss her 0750 sailing to Dunoon and back.
Loch Striven was again off for a while this morning, but the service to Raasay was back on later in the day.


A new month and things got off to a great start, with Loch Striven suffering ramp problems on her 0755 sailing which was forced to return to Raasay until she was able to resume the service at 0955.
Elsewhere, Loch Riddon was forced off service on completion of her 1545 sailing from Cumbrae Slip, leaving her larger consort to run the service to Cumbrae by herself. As luck (or rather misfortune) would have it, Loch Shira was also off between 1615 and 1715 so Cumbrae was not with a ferry service between those hours.
Further north however, heavy traffic was the cause of delays, with the Isle of Lewis completing the third of her sailings over an hour late.

News Logs:
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