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Safe Bulkers to install scrubbers on 19 vessels

12 Sep 2018

Dry bulk transportation company, Safe Bulkers, will work with Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry to install exhaust gas cleaning systems on half its fleet.

The company will install Alfa Laval PureSOx scrubbers in five of its Kamsarmax class vessels, and in thirteen Post-Panamax class vessels and its recently acquired Cape-size class vessel, with an option to install a scrubber on one more vessel, Safe Bulkers said in a statement earlier this week.

The installation works are expected to start in the second quarter of next year and the last installation in the fourth quarter of 2019.  This means that half of the company’s fleet will operate of heavy fuel oil, and the other half, consisting mainly of smaller vessels, with compliant low sulphur fuels.

Photo credit: Safe Bulkers
Published: 12 September, 2018

“Contractually, the expected down time for scrubber installation is 32 days for the first vessel and 30 days for the remaining vessels, while the down time during a scheduled dry docking as part of special survey is about 15 to 20 day,” the company said, adding that it will installing an US Coast Guard-approved Ballast Water Treatment System during this period.

According to New York Stock Exchange-listed company, the scrubber and the related expenditure for prefabrication and installation is expected to be in aggregate of about $2.0 million per medium size vessel, and that this investment will be financed from cash on hand and additional debt.

Safe Bulker will engage Cosco Shipping Heavy Industry, the biggest shipping group in China in terms of annual turnover for ship repair projects for the installation works.

“The retrofit of scrubbers is a demanding job involving the selection of reliable and durable equipment from manufacturer with extensive track record, detailed engineering studies and high quality of installation which should lead to reliable operations for years to come. Our technical department has worked extensively in all those areas in order to make possible the timely delivery at the required standards, within the budgeted costs for nineteen vessels with scrubbers within 2019, minimizing the down time,” said Safe Bulkers’ president Loukas Barmparis.

“We believe that we will enjoy a short pay-back period for this investment based on price differential between HFO and compliant fuels after January 1st, 2020,” Barmparis said.

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