Local News for Friday 31st August 2018
COMHAIRLE WELCOMES FERRY RESILIANCE PLAN
The Comhairle has tentatively welcomed the recent announcement by Michael Matheson MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, that £3.5m is to be invested by Scottish Government to reduce the risk of vessels breaking down and to return them to service quicker if they do.
Cllr Uisdean Robertson, Chairman of the Comhairle’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee said, “Our discussions with the previous Transport Minister confirmed that Transport Scotland were working with both Caledonian Maritime Assets and CalMac Ferries to identify ways and means to improve the resilience and reliability of what is obviously an ageing fleet. We are pleased to see that some progress is being made”.
“The announcement of a contribution of £3.5m is welcomed. We await details of how this funding is to be spent but we are aware that, not only is an increasing number of vessels in the fleet becoming more expensive and time-consuming to maintain to the necessary standards because of their age, but the availability of parts and, in some cases, the need to manufacture or fabricate them from “scratch”, is proving to be a growing challenge for the operator”.