LeConte a cheaper fix
November 27, 2019
On Thursday, the Alaska Marine Highway System announced its decision to move forward with repairs to the LeConte, with overhaul estimates totaling $5.2 million.
Earlier this month, AMHS pulled both the LeConte and the Aurora out of service for an overhaul cost comparison. Both ships had repair costs over their allotted budgets, and the state said it lacked the money to repair both ships, which each require “extensive steel replacement.”
“The Aurora will require 20 percent more steel to be replaced and locations are more challenging because of associated electric, plumbing, and hydraulic lines,” AMHS said in a press release. “Repair work on the Aurora will be more expensive and will take longer.” The Aurora will also need replacement engines, whereas the LeConte’s engines have been rebuilt, it said.
The LeConte repair work will include replacement of steel on the ship’s hull.
AMHS expects the LeConte to return to service May 15.
The Tazlina was pulled out of layup on Nov. 21 and will sail until Jan. 5. From January to March, service will drop back down to one sailing a week from Haines to Juneau, Saturdays on the Malaspina.
Last legislative session, $20 million was appropriated to AMHS, but it only has legislative authority to spend $13.5 million of that amount, according to the press release. The money will pay for annual overhauls for all active AMHS vessels. The Fairweather, Chenega, Aurora and Malaspina are in long-term layup and will not receive annual overhauls.