New look for Erica

11 June 2020 | Fishing

Hangana Seafood announced the completion of the refurbishment of one of its vessels, the M.F.V Erica.

The 142-foot stern trawler took to the waters on 9 June 2020 for a test run with service engineers, while her first official voyage set for Tuesday, 16 June 2020.

The ship has a carrying capacity of 28 people.

Hangana said the revamp of the Erica cost an estimated N$34 million and took about a year to complete.

Hangana Seafood fleet manager Christie Sitzer said the revamp will extend the lifespan of the Erica by another 20 years.

“The systems onboard had become outdated and as a result, her efficiency as a fishing vessel decreased. The revamp also increased Hangana Seafood’s catch capacity and will save the company maintenance costs in the long run.”

The refurbishment began in June 2019 and included the provision of a new main engine, upgraded electronic and propulsion systems, and renovations to the deck, wheelhouse and cabin facilities.

Erica’s captain Francois Stevens said that he and his crew are appreciative of the upgrades, adding that they are excited to be taking her out to sea.

Sitzer added that the Erica’s sister ship, the Begonia, is set to have refurbishments of her own next year.

The Erica was built in Durban in 1981.

Sitzer, who fondly refers to the Hangana vessels as his “meisiekinders”, says the Erica is well-built and in a class of her own.
This made the refurbishment a worthwhile endeavor.

Five years ago, two other Hangana vessels were refurbished – the Otter Bank and the Fisher Bank. However, the Erica is structurally different to these and thus presented a fresh challenge.

Upgrades

The upgrades on the Erica include the installation of a new main 8-cylinder engine from Belgium, new winchers from Spain and a split net drum system which allows for more efficient switching between trawls.

The electronic systems and propulsion system were also upgraded to the latest fishing technology.

The deck, wheelhouse and engine room also underwent a face-lift, creating a safe and welcoming environment for all on board.

“The cabin facilities were also renovated to ensure the crew can enjoy a clean and comfortable as well as safe living space,” Sitzer said.

Hangana Seafood managing director Herman Theron said that the revamp project was carried out in partnership with Namibian suppliers and service providers, adding that the partnership focused on unlocking Namibian potential and taking full advantage of the expertise the country has available.

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