Safe Bulkers to Fit Half of Its Fleet with Scrubbers

BulkerIllustration. Image Courtesy: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license

Monaco-based dry bulk shipping company Safe Bulkers has agreed with Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry (Cosco) a detailed schedule within 2019 for the installation of Alfa Laval PureSOx scrubbers in about half of its fleet.

The company will install scrubbers in five Kamsarmax class vessels, thirteen Post-Panamax class vessels and the recently acquired Capesize class vessel while it maintains an option for an additional scrubber.

All preparatory engineering works are in progress targeting to initiate the first installation in second quarter of 2019 and the last installation in the fourth quarter of 2019, opting for having about half of Safe Bulkers’ fleet operated with heavy fuel oil and the other half, consisting mainly of smaller more fuel efficient vessels, with compliant low sulfur fuels.

Contractually, the expected down time for scrubber installation is 32 days for the first vessel and 30 days for the remaining vessels, while the down time during a scheduled dry docking as part of special survey is about 15 to 20 days. During the same period ERMA First Ballast Water Treatment System (BWTS) will also be installed, achieving full compliance with IMO regulation Marpol Annex VI, as well as with Ballast Water Management Convention and EPA regulation for Ballast Water Treatment Systems.

The scrubber and the related expenditure for prefabrication and installation is expected to be in aggregate of about USD 2 million per medium size vessel, the company said, adding that the investment will be financed from cash on hand and additional debt.

“The retrofit of scrubbers is a demanding job involving the selection of reliable and durable equipment from manufacturer with extensive track record, detailed engineering studies and high quality of installation which should lead to reliable operations for years to come. Our technical department has worked extensively in all those areas in order to make possible the timely delivery at the required standards, within the budgeted costs for nineteen vessels with scrubbers within 2019, minimizing the down time,” Loukas Barmparis, President of Safe Bulkers, said.

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