The October to February period is often a challenging time of year for CalMac Ferries. The company uses the period to dry dock and refit vessels as the tourist season comes to an end. However, with continued demand for staycations, it seems likely that Scotland’s islands will continue to be busy beyond the normal shoulder months. With that in mind, will the First Minister outline what preparations are being made for this year’s maintenance programme?
We need to ensure that vessels are safe and well maintained. Every CalMac vessel requires essential annual maintenance over the winter months. Scheduling of the overhaul programme, including the relief vessels that are used, is complex and must take account of a range of factors. CalMac now has a long-term strategy in place for dry docking.
We continue to encourage CalMac to do everything possible to minimise the impact that is caused by maintenance work over the winter period, and we continue to support CalMac to deliver services in the face of the challenges that Covid continues to pose for us all.