Logos Hope is undergoing her 2018 phase of maintenance. The planned work, routine inspections and annual renewal of her Passenger Ship Safety Certificate (PSSC) are being carried out in Veracruz, Mexico.
The 45-year-old, 12,500 tonne-vessel closed to the public for her annual overhaul after a busy period. She had just been visited by a record-breaking number of people – 226,554 is more than any of the organisation’s ships have received in a single port – and among those was the seven-millionth guest in Logos Hope’s nine years of operation as the world’s largest floating bookfair.
Work to be done to keep the ship functioning includes: modifications to generators, lifeboat maintenance, re-tiling of bathrooms, checks of all safety equipment and an incline test to determine stability.
Around 130 of Logos Hope’s crew from the deck, engine, catering and cleaning departments have remained with the ship to turn their hands to the work. They’ve been joined by the organisation's shore-based engineering experts and overseers from equipment manufacturers, who have come from all over the world.
One of those strategising the whole operation is Matt Blair (Australia), Logos Hope’s Technical Project Manager. He actually began planning this year’s job list a year ago. Schedule changes in the shipyard’s timetable as well as challenges with receiving parts and materials sent from overseas have thrown their own ‘spanners in the works,’ but Matt and his team have come up with inventive workarounds.
“We’re required to have the underwater part of the ship’s hull inspected each year,” Matt explains. “This is normally something that happens when the ship is out of the water, in dry dock. We asked for exceptional permission from Logos Hope’s flag state (the country where she is registered), Malta, to have an underwater inspection carried out by divers instead. Having this done puts us in a more flexible position, should our timeframe change, and better prepares us for what to expect when we do come out of the water to work on the hull.”
Matt is grateful that work is progressing safely and with a good attitude from volunteers and experts alike, who are working in hot and less comfortable conditions. He reports that morale is high, with a weekend Karaoke night helping to boost spirits and bond the team!
To see highlights of Logos Hope’s maintenance phase, check our photos section for regular updates.