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Tuesday, May 4, 2021 

Austal Philippines Balamban, Cebu shipyard has successfully launched the second of two Auto Express 118 aluminium high-speed trimaran ferries, Hull 395, 'Baņaderos Express' ordered by Fred. Olsen Express.

Bañaderos Express is scheduled for delivery in the second half of 2021; Austal Australia delivered the first trimaran (Hull 394) of the two vessel A$190m contract, the Bajamar Express, in July 2020.

Austal CEO Paddy Gregg said: “The launch of Bañaderos Express has been completed according to plan and she looks great in the water, ready for final fit-out to commence. Austal Philippines’ new floating dry dock has performed exceptionally well and added tremendous capability and efficiency to our shipbuilding operations in Balamban.”

Austal Philippines President Wayne Murray said: “It’s truly impressive that our team have capably managed the launch of a 118m trimaran ferry, just weeks after the departure of a 109m catamaran, delivered to Fjord Line. In between, they’ve prepared our new floating dry dock while also working on yet another large ferry, the 115m Express 5 catamaran, ready to take up position in our main assembly bay. My thanks go to everyone at Austal Philippines, who continue to put in the greatest effort to maintain productivity and safety during this challenging Covid-19 environment.”

Bañaderos Express is capable of transporting more than 1,100 passengers and 276 cars at cruising speeds up to 38 knots. Along with Bajamar Express, the ship features an optimised trimaran hull form and Austal’s Marinelink monitoring and control system. The vessel will operate on Fred. Olsen Express’ Santa Cruz, Tenerife, and Agaete, Gran Canaria, routes in the Canary Islands.

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