The Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) announced on 14 June that due to ongoing repairs, the M/V Columbia will require additional time at Vigor Shipyard in Portland, Oregon. This delay will affect some passengers; affected passengers are being notified by AMHS staff now.
The M/V Malaspina is currently running in the Columbia’s place, and will continue until the
Columbia is back in service on 26 July. The Malaspina is a smaller vessel, therefore some passengers will not get the cabins they reserved and some vehicle reservations will be cancelled.
The Columbia went in for repairs after a suspected propeller strike with an unknown object last September. The parts necessary for the system required fabrication in Germany and took several months to manufacture. The propeller repairs were made and considered successful, and the vessel proceeded to sea trials to test the new system. While on sea trials, the vessel experienced another mechanical failure related to the newly installed propeller system.
Currently, technicians are working to diagnose the new failure and are developing a new repair plan. Once repairs are made, the US Coast Guard and the American Bureau of Shipping will certify the vessel as safe to operate.
- July 2017