Afloat has followed the launch of an Irish Sea shipyard built freight ferry Red Kestrel onto an Isle of Wight service for Red Funnel which also operates Hi-Speed passenger catamaran, Red Jet 7 which today marked one-year of service on the Solent.
According to Red Funnel the craft has travelled over 84,000 nautical miles, completed 3,615 round trips and nearly half a million passenger journeys.
Red Jet 7 joined the Isle of White serving fleet on July 17, 2018, and like elder fleetmate, Red Jet 6, was built on the English Channel island by Wight Shipyard Co. representing a £7m investment by Red Funnel.
To date Red Jet 7 has spent almost 3,000 hours at sea since launching last year following a prestigious naming ceremony by the Duchess of Cornwall who officially named the new ferry with the traditional formality of breaking a bottle of champagne on the bow.
The craft is the greenest ferry within the Red Jet group as it utilises a new technology to reduce an environmental footprint, and at four tons lighter than Red Jet 6, has improved fuel consumption which further reduces emissions.
Commenting on the one-year anniversary, Red Funnel CEO, Fran Collins, said: “The launch of Red Jet 7 was another proud day in Red Funnel’s history. We take great pride in our commitment to supporting British shipbuilding and are particularly proud of the fact that she was built on the Island, for the Island, utilising the skills of more than 85 Island-based expert craftsmen.
“In her first 12 months of operation, Red Jet 7 has a earned reliability score of 99 per cent and a punctuality score of 93 per cent, meaning that 99 per cent of all our scheduled crossings went ahead as planned and 93 per cent of crossings departed and arrived on time, with the majority of the shortfall due to adverse weather conditions such as fog and strong winds.
The CEO added "Overall, she’s had a very successful first year and we look forward to many more, especially as we now head into our summer season and concurrently mark another big anniversary – 50 years of hi-speed service, which we’re marking with The Red Funnel Fireworks at Cowes Week on the 16th of August. We can’t wait!”