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The annual refit of the Mull ferry will go ahead in Liverpool next month, despite the city being in the highest covid lockdown category in England.
The planned maintenance is to be carried out at the Cammell Laird drydock yard on Merseyside, where the Scottish Government has had a repair contract for the CalMac fleet for many years.
The MV Isle of Mull is due to leave for its annual refit on November 29 until December 17. The MV Isle of Arran will cover on the Oban to Craignure route during that time.
Operator Caledonian MacBrayne this week confirmed the annual refit would go ahead as planned on the 32-year-old vessel.
Among the work to be carried is an upgrade of the lifts to improve reliability and improved CCTV to help ensure the safety of passengers and crew.
A CalMac spokesman said: ‘The planned maintenance will not be affected as our ferries are considered an essential service and contractors working on the ferry are given essential worker status. It was as same during lockdown in March when we had some ferries still in overhaul all over the UK.’
‘Organising time for each vessel to enter dry dock while keeping services running is a real challenge for us that requires detailed planning. When the weather is taken into account, this can be a real test keeping communities connected,’ said CalMac’s Director of Operations Robert Morrison in an earlier statement.
Liverpool was the first region of England to be placed under the toughest Tier 3 restrictions in the fight against coronavirus. The area is on ‘very high’ alert and measures include pub closures and a ban on households mixing indoors, in private gardens and in most outdoor venues.