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Hawkesbury Mayor Kim Ford, Hills Shire Mayor Dr Michelle Byrne and Member for Hawkesbury Ray Williams announce the return of the ferry. Hawkesbury Mayor Kim Ford, Hills Shire Mayor Dr Michelle Byrne and Member for Hawkesbury Ray Williams announce the return of the ferry.
25 July 2013 Posted by 

Lower Portland Ferry back in service

THE Lower Portland Ferry has been officially re-launched.

In 2012, the Lower Portland Ferry was retired from service following a marine survey by the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS). The ferry is jointly owned and operated by The Hills Shire and Hawkesbury City Councils.

A new ferry was estimated to cost over $1m and would not be available for at least 12 months, so RMS provided a loan ferry until a replacement vessel could be sourced.

Following meetings between the RMS and both Councils, a decommissioned ferry from the North Coast was handed over at no cost. The Councils jointly funded a refurbishment of the vessel, costing about $500,000.

An independent marine survey confirmed that, despite being more than 100 years old, the vessel’s steel hull and structural framework were in good condition.

The refurbishment was completed at the RMS’ Mortlake ferry maintenance facility and included a new engine, electrical rewire, new LED navigational lights, a new operator’s console, an overhaul of the drive wheels and gearbox and the resurfacing of the asphalt vehicle deck.

The Lower Portland Ferry started its new life crossing the Hawkesbury on July 18.



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