MS Spirit of Tasmania I

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MS Spirit of Tasmania I at Devonport, Tasmania.jpg
Spirit of Tasmania I at Devonport Tasmania
  • 1998—2002: Superfast IV
  • 2002—present: Spirit of Tasmania I
  • 1998—2002: Superfast Ferries
  • 2003—2006: TT-Line Pty. Ltd.[1]
Port of registry:

1998—2002: Patras-Ancona

2002 onwards: Melbourne-Devonport
Builder: Kvaerner Masa-Yards Turku New Shipyard, Finland
Yard number: 1341[1]
Status: In service
General characteristics
Class and type: Superfast III class fast ropax ferry
Length: 194.3 m (637 ft 6 in)
Beam: 25.00 m (82 ft)
Draught: 6.55 m (21 ft 6 in)
Decks: 11
Installed power:
Speed: 30.8 kn (57.04 km/h) maximum speed
  • 1400 passengers
  • 750 berths
  • 1000 cars
  • 1852 lanemeters

MS Spirit of Tasmania I is a fast ropax ferry owned by TT-Line Pty. Ltd. and operated on the route between Melbourne and Devonport. She was built in 1998 by Kvaerner Masa-Yards at Turku New Shiyard in Finland for Superfast Ferries as MS Superfast IV. From 2002 onwards she sails for TT-Line Pty. Ltd. as MS Spirit of Tasmania I alongside the Spirit of Tasmania II.[1]

Concept and construction[edit]

The Superfast IV was the second ship of the second pair (the former pair being Superfast I & Superfast II built in Germany) built for Attica Group's subsidiary Superfast Ferries at Kvaerner Masa-Yards for their Adriatic Sea services from Patras to Ancona She was a sister ship of Superfast III.[1]

Bulbous bow clearly visible as she comes into Melbourne
Multi-lingual signage, Greek first
Tri-lingual signage, Greek then English and German

Amenities and deck layout[edit]

Spirit of Tasmania I has 11 decks, with 222 cabins.

  • Decks 1 to 6 are used to hold cars and trucks. The for-end of Decks 1 and 2 are accessed via a ramp from deck 3 (The Aft-end space of the two decks houses the ships machinery). Deck 6 holds cars using a hoistable platform.
  • Deck 7 has cabins, a reception area, small movie theater, lounge bar, gaming lounge, gift shop, tourism bureau, main bar, two restaurants and a children's playroom.
  • Deck 8 has cabins and an ocean recliner area.
  • Deck 9 is mainly crew area.
  • Deck 10 has a bar and disco area.
  • Deck 11 has a helicopter landing pad.

Service history[edit]

1998—2002: Superfast IV[edit]

The Superfast IV entered service on 1 April 1998 on Superfast Ferries' PatrasAncona route.[1] In March 2002 the Superfast IV was sold to TT-Line Pty. Ltd.

2002 Onwards: Spirit of Tasmania I[edit]

TT-Line took over their new ship on 10 May of the same year she along with her sister were handed over to TT-Line Pty. Ltd. At Patras.[3] The two ships then sailed to the Neorion ship yard on the island of Syros for painting and general overhaul and renamed Spirit of Tasmania I.[1] She subsequently sailed to Hobart, Tasmania, where she was refitted for her new service. On 1 September 2002 she entered service on TT-Line's MelbourneDevonport route.[1] The new pair of ships were very popular and the Tasmanian Government decided that a third ship was needed for a Devonport-Sydney service, subsequently purchasing a third superfast ferry and renaming it Spirit of Tasmania III. However it proved to be unprofitable and the ship was sold in September 2006.

2005 event[edit]

During the night of 3 / 4 February 2005 Spirit of Tasmania I ran into heavy seas in the Bass Strait while sailing from Melbourne to Devonport. At approximately 2 am the seas reached a height of 20 metres.[1] The seas smashed cabin windows on the starboard bow and subsequently cabin walls were smashed down, flooding cabin decks as high as deck 9[4] (the deck under the bridge). Many passengers were unaware of the cause of water in their cabins as the water disabled the public announcement system.[4] The captain decided it best to return to Melbourne,[4] arriving mid morning to heavy media coverage. The ship remained in port overnight for temporary repairs and sailed again the following evening for Devonport.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Asklander, Micke. "M/S Superfast IV (1998)". Fakta om Fartyg (in Swedish). Retrieved 2008-05-19.
  2. ^ "Spirit of Tasmania Vessel Specifications". Retrieved 9 March 2011.
  3. ^ Latreche, Lucas. "Spirit of Tasmania I". Ferries And Cruse Ships. Retrieved 2008-05-20.
  4. ^ a b c Jackson, Andra (4 February 2005). "Pounded by wild seas, Spirit forced to turn tail". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 2008-05-20.

External links[edit]