Update 11.04.19 PM: RED KESTREL left Birkenhead for Southampton earlier today as a “dead ship” under the tow of the tug WILLPOWER, assisted while in The Mersey by VITAL.
Red Funnel’s brand-new freight ferry RED KESTREL undertook sea trials on Monday in advance of her handover later. The £10m ferry was built by Birkenhead shipbuilders Cammell Laird who laid her keel on 31 May 2018 and floated her off on February 19 this year. RED KESTREL will be able to accommodate 265 lane metres of freight, equivalent to 12 articulated lorries, as well as their drivers within her 74m length. She is powered by two Cummins QSK38 diesel engines, a larger version of the same type which powers STRANGFORD II which was also built at the same yard. These engines drive two Rolls Royce azimuth thrusters giving her a service speed of 12.5 knots.
RED KESTREL is expected to enter service on the busy Southampton to Cowes route in early May, providing additional capacity to the existing passenger and vehicle ferries RED OSPREY, RED FALCON, and RED EAGLE. The new vessel can