Canadian ferry owner and operator BC Ferries revealed that its new vessel, Salish Orca, departed Remontowa shipyard in Gdansk, Poland on November 22, 2016, and is on its way to British Columbia.
Salish Orca, the first of three new Salish Class vessels, departed Poland for a 10,440 nautical mile journey.
“This is an exciting day for BC Ferries as our newest ship, Salish Orca, is one step closer to joining our fleet,” Mike Corrigan, BC Ferries’ President and CEO, said.
The company said that the Transatlantic voyage is expected to take approximately 45 to 55 days, depending on the weather.
The journey will include stops for refueling in Santa Cruz, Canary Islands and Panama City, Panama, after transiting the Panama Canal and sailing up the west coast of North America to British Columbia.
BC Ferries’ first natural gas-powered vessel is scheduled to arrive in B.C. in January 2017.
The ship is scheduled to start service on the Comox-Powell River route in the spring of 2017.
The ferry operator said it will take final acceptance and ownership of Salish Orca upon final inspection once the vessel arrives in B.C.
Salish Eagle and Salish Raven are scheduled to arrive in early 2017 and are projected to be introduced into service on the Southern Gulf Islands routes by summer 2017, according to the company.
Each of the three vessels features a length of 107 meters and is able to accommodate 145 vehicles and up to 600 passengers.