THE passenger ferry Galleons Passage is expected to pass through the Panama Canal tomorrow after some modification to the vessel is made.
Page 20 of a 30-page manual which all boats are furnished with if their destination is via the canal, states that a vessel’s specifications must be submitted 96 hours in advance to authorities.
Newsday learned yesterday that it was only yesterday these specifications were submitted on behalf of the Galleons Passage which is making its way to Cuba and then Trinidad from China. The National Infrastructural Development Company (NIDCO) in a release yesterday, said when the boat arrived close to the port in Balboa, Panama on Wednesday last week, it was boarded by a Panama Canal captain who identified the need for modification to be made to the pilot boarding station.
The Galleons Passage, a new boat bought by the TT government from China to service the seabridge between Trinidad and Tobago, has been making its journey from Guangdong to Hawaii, then to Mexico before arriving in Panama. Newsday sent questions to NIDCO about the nature of the work to be done, duration and cost. The boat has to be lifted, like all others, with the help of lock gates, to higher level and later dropped down to the sea level at the other end. That explains why the modifications must take place. Once the work is completed and the vessel passes inspection, NIDCO said, the boat’s captain and crew would be advised of its scheduled time to pass through the canal.
“It is therefore estimated that the vessel will pass through the canal on or around Wednesday. Accordingly, the expected time of arrival in Santiago de Cuba is Saturday May 26 all good weather permitting.”