Dongara Marine Delivers Ferry in Western Australia
Placing a board deck across two canoes, to make a broad flat and stable surface for transporting passengers and freight, was often done to form early ferries. The true catamaran is an evolution of that practical design concept. In recent decades, Australia has led in the development of all shapes and sizes for aluminum catamaran ferries.
In December 2019, Dongara Marine of Port Denison delivered a very practical 148-seat, 24- by 5.5-meter ferry to Western Australia’s Public Transport Authority. The MV Tricia, has joined two similar, but slightly smaller, ferries on a run of about 1.5 kilometers between Elizabeth Quay and Mends Street Jetty in South Perth.
Pragmatically designed as a people-mover in protected waters, the craft is given an attractive over all superstructure. A piloting console is set forward in the cabin on the starboard side to allow the master to make landings single handed. Passenger entry is from the starboard side. The catamaran is built to drawings from Dongara Marine’s design partner, Southerly Designs, who have an impressive portfolio of sea kindly fishing and pilot boats, many of which were also built by Dongara Marine.
This quality design and fabrication history of the two firms is evident in the MV Trica. A pair of 184 kW Cummins QSB6.7 engines turning fixed pitch five-blade Veem props provide propulsion power through Twin Disc MGX5065 gears. With a 16-knot design speed, the vessel easily achieved that on sea trials. A pair of electric bow thrusters increases the vessel’s maneuverability alongside the dock making handling possible with a single operator. The main engines were supplied by Cummins South Pacific in Perth. The MV Tricia is built to AMSA NSCV 2E class requirements.