Surprise new role for former SAS Outeniqua

Dec 22, 2006
Author: P&S

SAS Outeniqua seen sailing from Durban harbour on one of her final operational cruises to East Africa where she participated in joint exercises with navies of France and East Africa. Picture Terry Hutson. Click image to enlarge

The former South African Navy fleet replenishment ship SAS OUTENIQUA, which was decommissioned several years ago after only 11 years service with the navy, has been sold once again and is to become a floating hotel (or flotel) for the North Sea oil industry.

This follows her acquisition by Scotlandís C&M Marine Services who are investing US $ 100 million in the purchase and conversion of the former Russian and South African navy ship, which since her decommissioning has operated with the name PAARDEBERG.

In this guise and as a cargo vessel operating along the African coast which apparently included one or two trips to the Antarctic, the ice-strengthened ship has nevertheless not been a success and her further disposal comes as no real surprise.

When she is re-commissioned as the construction vessel ICE MAIDEN it will be to transport and house a workforce of about 400 oil workers, hopefully in the North Sea say the new owners who intend chartering her to one of the major North Sea operators. The 14,000-ton Class AAA ice ship is currently undergoing conversion in Mobile, Alabama.

C&M Marine, which was recently the subject of a management buy-out, says it intends becoming one of Scotlandís largest marine engineering companies.



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