$90M spent to correct safety issues on MV Barima vessel


Serving as the main mode of transportation between the capital city and Region One (Barima-Waini), the MV Barima vessel will soon be back in operation after undergoing some $90 million in repairs to correct grave safety defects.

Minister of Public Works Juan Edghill inspected the repair process on Tuesday as the vessel remains in dry dock at Pritipaul’s dockyard at Supply, East Bank Demerara.

The MV Barima vessel has been in existence for some 88 years and has undergone serious wear and tear, prompting the government’s move to expend the large sum to ensure that the vessel is safe for water commute.

The minister highlighted that the vessel’s systems were heavily compromised and if not corrected, could have had dire consequences.

The MV Barima, docked at Supply, East Bank Demerara

“Taking that into consideration, safety is our number one priority so we had to make a quality decision of getting this boat fully rehabilitated.”

The vessel will be handed over to the Transport and Harbours Department after which the engine will be inspected by MACORP to address additional issues.

“For those of us who live on the coastland, this might just be another boat that they are fixing but for the people of Region One, this is their life.

“This affects the price they pay for food; this affects getting their produce to the market, this affects them getting to Georgetown for important appointments; this affects children getting out to secondary school or institutions of higher learning and getting back home to their families. This affects everyday living in Region One so we did not treat this lightly,” Edghill said.

He noted too that work is also ongoing on the Parika/Supenaam ferry to resolve some generator issues.

The MV Barima has the capacity to transport some 150 passengers twice daily.

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