Last year the National Navy announced that the multipurpose vessel “ARC Caribe” would become the fourth research platform at the service of the General Maritime Directorate (Dimar) in the country and that it would accompany the ARC ships “Malpelo”, ARC “Providencia “And ARC” Roncador “” in compliance with the guidelines that Dimar leads for the development and maritime security of the Nation, which allows Colombia to consolidate as a maritime country, “said the entity.
But the red and white ship identified with the number 152 next to its bow, and which docked at the Bocagrande Naval Base on June 5, 2018, remains there, inactive, due to several damages.
The ship was built in the shipyards of Fujian Mawei Shipbuilgind Ltda, in China, and its journey to Colombia was commanded by the frigate captain Luis Fernando Acosta Vélez. Sailed from the Chinese city of Fuzhou to Cartagena, passing through the ports of Hong Kong, Guam Island, Hawaii and San Diego, until arriving in Cartagena on June 5 last year.
However, despite being built in China, the purchase business was made with the English firm Marine Assets Corporation (MAC), for about 44,000 million pesos, plus about $ 935,000 for endowment and equipment of the boat, is say about 3,000 million pesos more.
Why was it damaged?
The General Maritime Directorate told El Universal that “the navigation unit was acquired after a national and international market study, in which 18 market companies participated, including shipyards, builders, brokers and shipowners, from which information on 73 ships type OSV (Offshore Support Vessels), support vessels on the high seas, with a criterion of age of construction from 2000 and in accordance with the requirements identified by Dimar for the fulfillment of its institutional mission ”.
Thus, the ARC Caribe acquired “was received with the certificates of the test protocols and with the certification certification of“ Maltese Cross ”issued by the ABS classification house. Additionally, rigor tests were carried out, that is, acceptance tests at the port (HAT) and acceptance at sea (SAT), verifying the operation of all systems on board ”.
The ship was acquired through the Purchasing Agency of the Colombian Area Force (ACOFA), through contract 026-ACOFA-ARC-2017.
The business was conducted as commander of the Navy Vice Admiral Ernesto Durán González, who had previously served as Maritime Director General. In other words, the purchased ship met the technical and standards requirements.
But it was in its transit to Colombia, that the ship “presented some levels of vibration in one of its axis lines, being immediately reported to the seller within the ship’s warranty period,” explains the entity.
It was thus that in an advanced inspection in Cartagena it was possible to demonstrate that the vibrations caused wear in some parts of the propulsion axes and in the structural supports of the bearing bases, “so it was decided to suspend the ship’s operations to avoid major damages, pending the replacement by guarantee of the affected parts and the correction of the root cause ”, emphasizes the Dimar.
Dimar says that once the novelties of the ship have been identified, in November 2018, “the process of formal claim to the seller of the technical guarantees and contract fulfillment began. The seller of the ship, accompanied by the ABS and Caterpillar sorting house (manufacturer of the propulsion system), will complete the work for its commissioning in the coming months ”.
With this, the entity expects that this situation will be clarified in a few months, the vessel will be repaired, integrating the research fleet at the service of the Maritime General Directorate with the other Malpelo, Providencia and Roncador ships.
With respect to the acquisition of a new spacecraft for research, which would be done in the coming months, so that it could be operational in 2020, the entity has not ruled. For now, the ARC Caribe must be put into operation so that this situation does not become another of the chapters of patrimonial detriment of the Nation.