The transformation of the former GALLOWAY PRINCESS/STENA GALLOWAY has continued into 2018 according to her owner, despite the original intention that she would enter service again between Algeciras and Tangier Med in September 2017, and recent rumours that she had been abandoned. Current owner DWLM (Detroit World Logistic Maritime) have posted a series of images to their Facebook page showing how she will look inside. They have stated that they now intend for her to return to service on the same link this coming April, with around 15% of the work on her still to be completed. No reason has been given for the further delay.
LE RIF has previously operated on the Algeciras – Tangier route, from 2002 until 2013. During 2013 she was abandoned after the financial collapse of her owner/operator IMTC. At the time there were also rumours of serious a serious mechanical failure onboard the vessel. Prior to her service across the Strait of Gibraltar the Harland and Wolff built vessel had almost exclusively operated between Stranraer and Larne/Belfast for both Sealink and Stena Line.
Having been abandoned in the Moroccan climate since 2013, many had expected the vessel to be sold for scrap when she was eventually offered for sale in 2016 as part of the process of recovering the debts owed by IMTC. However, she was purchased at auction by then unknown DWLM for just 11 million Moroccan Dirhams (approx $0.8m US). It has previously been stated that DWLM have invested some 70 million Moroccan Dirhams (approx $7.4m USD) on the refurbishment and overhaul of LE RIF which is taking place at Jobson Italia, Naples.
Detroit World Logistic Maritime (DWLM) are a 100% Moroccan owned company controlled by the Rahmouni / El Ghazoui group, which was created specifically to operate ferries from Morocco. LE RIF is the first vessel they have acquired, though the company have also previously stated that they intend to acquire a second vessel to run between Nador and Almeria. DWLM have a website here and a Facebook page here.
All images are courtesy of DWLM.
|Other names (dates,operator)||Stena Galloway (1/1991 – 2/2002 Sealink Stena Line, Stena Sealink Line, Stena Line)|
Harland and Wolff (Musgrave Yard), Belfast
29th September 1978
24th May 1979
|Original entry into commercial service|
|1st May 1980|
(Stranraer to Larne)
|Lloyds Register of Shipping until 2/12/15|
|Length overall (between perpendiculars)||129.426m (120.7m)|
|Gross Tonnage as built||6,268|
|Gross tonnage (Current)||12,175|
|Power(Max/Pme @ 75%)||11,770kW|