The Isle of Man Steam Packet Company has invested £203,000 in its vehicle fleet to support freight and passenger services.
The company – which run services out of Heysham Port including the twice-daily Ben-my-Chree passenger ferry – has purchased a new tractor unit from specialist manufacturer Terberg. This will be used to load and unload freight trailers from Steam Packet Company vessels.
Two new Ford Transit minibuses have also been acquired for shoreside use, chiefly to transport passengers who require additional assistance to and from the vessels.
The new vehicles are part of a rolling programme of updating and maintaining the shoreside equipment fleet. In recent years more than £1 million has been spent on luggage tractors and utility vans, as well as other minibuses and freight tractor units.
Steam Packet Company chief executive Mark Woodward said: “It is essential to have reliable vehicles in our fleet, to ensure smooth and efficient services are delivered to our freight customers and passengers.
“We have to source vehicles to meet the very specific demands of operating in a port setting and moving on and off vessels, especially when it comes to specialist equipment like the tractor units. This recent significant expenditure is part of our ongoing programme of investing in our infrastructure and services, safeguarding the reliability and effectiveness of our shoreside operations.”
During discussions, Terberg UK sales manager Richard Wooding visited the island and was impressed by the charitable work the Steam Packet Company supports.
His company has now donated £500 to the Rob Vine Fund, a voluntary charity which provides pre-hospital medical and rescue care, equipment and training of medics for a number of motorsport events.