Following the technical issues on both Manannan and Snaefell, the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company has been carrying out a review of its operations and wishes to update passengers on the progress of repairs and the implications for some sailings.

As previously advised, the damaged crankshaft on Manannan has been removed from the vessel. It was originally intended that the new crankshaft would be installed prior to the start of the school holiday period.

In order to minimise the possibility of a similar situation arising with the new crankshaft, the engine concerned has been subjected to detailed examination to establish the cause of the crankshaft failure. As a result there is a need for some additional preventative work. This must be completed before the new crankshaft is installed and the engine rebuilt.

Isle of Man Steam Packet Company technical staff will be working closely alongside specialist personnel from the engine manufacturer in order to effect the repair. As a result, Manannan will continue to operate her planned sailing schedule on three engines beyond the start of the school holidays and into August. This ensures that passengers can still complete their planned journeys, however, crossing times will continue to be around 30 minutes longer than scheduled. The Company will issue a further update once a more detailed timeline for the repair is available.

Manannan is currently covering Snaefell’s Liverpool schedule to enable engineers to evaluate and plan repair work to her damaged engine. Snaefell will continue to operate her scheduled sailings on the Belfast and Dublin routes and will operate some of her scheduled Liverpool sailings, with Manannan assisting where necessary.

As a result of increased crossing times, the following minor changes are being made to some sailings on the Belfast and Dublin routes.

All sailings on these routes that are scheduled to depart at 1400 will now depart at 1445 until further notice.

All sailings on these routes that are scheduled to depart at 1815 will now depart at 1830 until further notice.

Saturday 24 July
The Douglas to Belfast sailing at 0700 will now depart at 0630.

The Belfast to Peel sailing at 1030 will now depart at 1045.

All other sailing times remain as scheduled.

Isle of Man Steam Packet Company staff will be contacting passengers affected by these changes to the schedule. We would once again ask that all passengers ensure that they have left mobile phone or other contact details with us.

Round the Island Trips
In order to maintain continuity of regular scheduled services the Company feels that it is prudent not to operate sailings that are not part of the main schedule. As a result and with regret the Manannan round-the-Island trips on 28 July and 18 August will not be going ahead. Any passengers booked on these sailings will be contacted to arrange a refund of their fare.

Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: “Following the highly unusual development of having similar technical issues on both Manannan and Snaefell, we have been reviewing progress on repair work and how we can best meet passenger requirements.

“While we could have fitted a new crankshaft in Manannan prior to the school holidays, I feel we have made the right decision to establish the reasons for the failure and carry out remedial work. This will better ensure future reliability by minimising the chances of similar failures. We will provide a further update on Manannan’s progress once we have held further discussions with the engine manufacturers. In the meantime, Manannan will operate her scheduled services on three engines while the necessary repairs are carried out.

“Snaefell has been taken out of service today and Wednesday to enable engineers to undertake a more detailed assessment. A further update on Snaefell will be issued once that inspection work is completed and a repair schedule has been arranged.

“I would like to apologise again to passengers for the longer than normal crossing times, but feel that this approach to the repairs causes less inconvenience to passengers than taking the vessels out of service for repairs, which would result in the cancellation of some services at this busy time.

“I would also like to apologise for the cancellation of our round-the-Island trips. I know many people enjoy these trips, but our priority at this challenging time needs to be the maintenance of the regular scheduled service.”