Despite COVID-19 delays impacting many of China’s repair shipyards, SeaQuest Shipmanagement has ensured that a client’s handysize bulk carrier completed her second special survey, dry-dock and Ballast Water Treatment System (BWTS) retrofit two days ahead of schedule and 7% below budget.

The MV San Felice completed her retrofit on 5th March at COSCO Nantong under the supervision of a SeaQuest team.

The work list included: routine dry-dock works, hull blasting and painting, cargo holds blasting and painting, maintenance of the hatch cover hydraulic system, other minor deck and engine works, and the installation of an Alfa Laval PureBallast BWTS, including ballast lines modification, new electric cabling and remote control system. The duration of the repairs was estimated at 28 days.

The works had originally been scheduled for early December 2019, but were postponed for commercial reasons before COVID-19 struck to 28th January 2020, just ahead of Chinese New Year.

In the last week of January 2020 China was severely hit by COVID-19 and COSCO Nantong, as well as all its subcontractors, were forced to stop all activities until 8th February 2020.

Yard activities were reactivated on 9th February, although many problems had to be overcome: there was a severe lack of local manpower for another couple of weeks. Receiving necessary materials on board was also problematic. At the same time China implemented a travel ban that affected all expatriate superintendents, necessitating the appointment of a Chinese superintendent, recruited from the SeaQuest local team. However, thanks to the excellent relationship between SeaQuest and the yard’s top management, the vessel was included in COSCO “First Priority Vessels” list. Also critical were SeaQuest’s long-standing connections with the domestic industry and technical experts, which meant that MV San Felice was successfully re-delivered to her owners and charterers two days ahead of schedule on 5th March 2020.

“We are proud of our achievement,” said Massimo de Vincenzo, director of SeaQuest’s service centre in Genoa. “It clearly shows how expertise, continuous coordination between owners and managers, a strong local presence and selection of reliable partners enable demanding projects can overcome any hurdle. We are particularly grateful to the master of the MV San Felice and his crew for their high professionalism and commitment during such a critical situation, and to COSCO’s management and staff for the great assistance granted throughout the whole repair period”.

The next vessel under SeaQuest management due for dry-dock, repairs and BWTS retrofit at COSCO is scheduled for 17th March 2020.