20 Aug 2009

American Samoa's MYD shipyard gets MV Sili repair contract

6:31 pm on 20 August 2009

American Samoa's MYD shipyard is to repair the interisland vessel, MV Sili, after all.

The territory's port director, Matagi Ray McMoore, says the vessel will go on the MYD slipway for repairs early next month and that there will be no further bidding for the job.

Originally, authorities in American Samoa had considered having the work completed in Hawaii while another plan to have MYD do the repairs was withdrawn for lack of funding.

Now Lieutenant Ted Harre, who heads the Coast Guard Marine Detachment Office in Pago Pago, says the MV Sili is long overdue for an overhaul.

And he says the sinking of Tonga's Princess Ashika illustrates the need for the safety and sea worthiness of any vessel to be assured.

"It is very clear to everyone that we need to get this done. I know that they are proposing to have two sailings this week and with the agreements that were made today with the Governor, I believe we will be able to allow those two sailings. We have increased some of the engineering staff onboard the vessel and we have put a few other safety measures in place."

Lieutenant Ted Harre