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Superferry Updates

January 28, 2010

Aerial view of the Hawaii Superferry Alakai during its Open House on Kauai. Author Christopher P. Becker via Wikimedia Commons

More info from the Navy on a story New Wars reported on last week, concerning the former Hawaii Superferries’ impending mission of mercy to Haiti:

High-speed ferry ships MV Huakai and MV Alakai are preparing to sail to Haiti in support of Operation Unified Response to provide disaster relief following the Jan. 12 earthquake.

Huakai and Alakai were originally built to serve as passenger and vehicle ferries in Hawaii but were turned over to the Maritime Administration’s custody when the ferry service went bankrupt.

The ships will be under operational control of the Military Sealift Command (MSC) during Operation Unified Response.

The ships’ main tasks will be to transfer equipment and personnel in the region. They are configured for the mission to each hold 450 tons of cargo and 500 passengers and can travel at a sustained speed of 33 knots.

Huakai loaded a rapid port opening package, communications gear, fork lifts, trucks, Humvees, supplies and other equipment at Fort Eustis, Va., Jan. 27. Huakai will also carry personnel from the 689th Rapid Port Opening Element, MSC’s Expeditionary Port Unit Detachment and elements from the Army’s 7th Sustainment Brigade. Huakai got underway Jan. 27 and is scheduled to arrive in Haiti Jan. 29.

Alakai is currently in Norfolk, Va., and is scheduled to get underway for Haiti in the next several days.

Here are some specs on the ferries Alakai and Huakai via Wikipedia:

  • Displacement-1646 Tons
  • Length-349 ft (106 m)
  • Beam-78 ft (24 m)
  • Draft-12 ft (3.7 m)
  • Propulsion-4 x Rolls-Royce KaMeWa 125MkII waterjets
  • Speed-35 kn
  • Capacity-866 passengers, 282 cars or 20 large trucks and 90 cars
  • Crew-21
7 Comments leave one →
  1. September 21, 2014 7:43 am

    Thanks , I have just been looking for information approximately this subject for a while and yours is
    the greatest I’ve discovered till now. But, what about the
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  2. Mike Burleson permalink*
    January 29, 2010 6:02 am

    Saw that video, Mauibrad. Very interesting and tried to embed it here but apparently WordPress can handle Shockwave!

  3. Mike Burleson permalink*
    January 28, 2010 7:05 pm

    This could get very interesting. Hope it works out for the Haitians sake and the Navy.

  4. D. E. Reddick permalink
    January 28, 2010 6:11 pm

    If they’re to be making transits between Haiti and CONUS, then which of the closest East coast ports will be used?

    Port of Miami, FL
    Port Everglades (Broward Co., FL)
    Naval Station Mayport (Duval Co., FL)
    Port of Jacksonville, FL
    Port of Tampa, FL
    Port of Savannah, GA
    Port of Charleston, SC

    There are a number of smaller southeast ports that might used, if needed. They line the coasts of Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina every 75 or 100 miles and offer all sorts of accessibility (Brunswick, GA being another good example).

  5. leesea permalink
    January 28, 2010 4:46 pm

    The lift of Port Opening Equipment to Haiti will also highlight the need for the JHSVs. I think the HSFs will be doing GITMO to Haiti runs as opposed to back to CONUS?

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