VESSEL REVIEW | Grieg 04 – High-speed, all-weather general service workboat for Grieg Seafood’s Shetland salmon farm

VESSEL REVIEW | Grieg 04 – High-speed, all-weather general service workboat for Grieg Seafood’s Shetland salmon farm

Grieg 04 - Best Small Fish Farm Support Vessel (Photo: Scott Welding and Fabrication)

Flugga Boats has delivered a batch of four newbuild fish farm support vessels to the Shetland salmon farming division of Norwegian aquaculture company Grieg Seafood.

As with other craft in the Flugga Boats product line, the Grieg Seafood workboats each have an aluminium hull and an HDPE collar to help ensure longer vessel lifespan and lower maintenance requirements. The all-weather, high-speed craft will be used primarily to transfer personnel between the different sites within Grieg Seafood’s vast salmon farming operation in the Scottish archipelago of Shetland, where Flugga Boats is also located.

The boats will support activities such as water sampling, lice and gill survey, and inspection. When not being used for personnel transfers, the newbuilds are expected to be available for general fish farm servicing duties.

The addition of smaller craft to Grieg Seafood’s aquaculture support fleet in Shetland is intended to free up the company’s larger vessels to take on the heavier work at the farm. The lighter work will be reserved for the smaller craft, which have also been fitted out for night operations as well since the farm is sometimes open for 24 hours.

The boats each have a length of 8.5 metres, an MCA Cat 3-coded cabin with seating for four crewmembers, and two OXE diesel outboard engines that deliver a cruising speed of 25 knots and a maximum speed in excess of 30 knots. Even with a full fuel tank, each boat has a displacement of just under four tonnes.

In addition to being durable and more fuel-efficient than most other diesel-powered outboards available elsewhere, the OXE engines ensure low emissions, thus making the boats ideal for regular operations in support of the owner’s salmon farming business. A small heater can also be connected to the engines to help provide the crew with a measure of comfort amidst the cold during nighttime operations.

The use of outboards also means each boat will have additional deck space being freed up. Grieg Seafood had specifically requested this configuration as it would ensure each boat would also have enough room to accommodate two full-size salmon bins on the aft deck.

Further, the owners had opted for diesel-powered engines since these would ensure lower operating costs compared to petrol engines.

Flugga Boats had no trouble deciding on which craft design to utilise for the new Grieg Seafood workboats, as the company has had years of experience building vessels for various customers in the Scottish aquaculture sector and even local police departments. The chosen design for the salmon workboats was of a previous build that has been proven to be capable of carrying moderate loads and sailing well in head or following seas.

However, finalising the design of the new Grieg Seafood workboats still presented some challenges, as Flugga Boat told Baird Maritime:

“Despite the proven capability of the design, [the customer] still needed the cabin and outboard configuration factored in. Getting things like centre of gravity correct and finding room for everything that is required in such a boat proved tricky, but it worked out well.

“Further, the fact that Shetland is a very isolated area meant that transport of the needed parts to our facilities became an issue. Parts have to be ordered in good time as delivery can take weeks rather than days, especially with our aluminium plates being profiled in Holland and the plastic for the boats’ HDPE collars being sourced from Austria.”

The workboats have also been fitted with a self-draining deck and a Raymarine electronics package that includes a depth sounder, AIS, VHF radio, and compass. One innovative feature of the electronics package is the augmented reality system that provides compass headings on a small multi-function display to ensure accurate positioning and navigation.

For more news, features and vessel reviews as part of this month’s Fishing and Aquaculture Week, please click here.

Grieg 04
Type of vessel: Fish farm support workboat
Flag: United Kingdom
Owner: Grieg Seafood, Norway
Operator: Grieg Seafood Shetland, United Kingdom
Designer: Flugga Boats, United Kingdom
Builder: Flugga Boats, United Kingdom
Hull construction material: HDPE and aluminium
Length overall: 8.5 metres
Displacement: 4 tonnes
Main engines: 2 x OXE diesel outboards, each 111 kW
Maximum speed: 30 knots
Cruising speed: 25 knots
Electronics supplied by: Raymarine
Depth sounders: Raymarine
Radios: Raymarine VHF radio
Compass: Raymarine
AIS: Raymarine
Other deck equipment: Self-draining deck
Type of fuel: Diesel
Crew: 4

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