Finnsirius awarded as the Ro-Pax of the Year 2023
Finnlines’ new arrival M/S Finnsirius was awarded as the Ro-Pax of the Year 2023 by the Ferry Shipping Summit, which gathers a large number of professionals within shipping, including ferry, ro-ro and ro-pax operators, ports and suppliers.
Finnlines President and CEO Tom Pippingsköld thanked for the Award, which is a recognition for the intensive work on innovative and sustainable shipping Finnlines has invested in during the past decade.
Shipbuilding is a collaborative project and in addition to the China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Weihai it has engaged many. The Superstar ro-pax concept plan design was implemented in close cooperation with the Grimaldi Group, Finnlines and Nordic ship design company, Knud E. Hansen. The concept was further developed into a contract design by the Finnish naval architects and marine engineers Deltamarin, who were also responsible for basic engineering.
The Ferry Shipping Summit has been held annually since 2018, this year in Malmö in September. The summit participants discussed topical issues, such as crewing, future industry strategies, automation and alternative fuels.
Port of Hanko 150 years
When ships started to run on steam engines in the 1800s, navigation through ice became possible. Situated at the southernmost point of Finland, Hanko was an obvious choice for the first year-round port. After a railway connection had been completed, the port was opened in the autumn of 1873. From the very beginning, Hanko has provided the fastest connection between Finland and Continental Europe.
One historical curiosity is that butter was an important export product in the early 1900s. Almost all, 96 per cent, of Finnish butter was shipped from Hanko. Smörmagasinet (Butter Storehouse) was later transformed into a passenger terminal and harbour office.
Today, the port is one of the largest commercial ports in Finland and has specialised in unitised cargo, i.e. trailers, semi-trailers and containers. Cars are the major imported products, exports consist mostly of paper, board, steel and timber.
Currently the Port of Hanko consists of the Western Harbour, Outer Harbour and Koverhar Harbour. Finnlines’ ships operate from the Western Harbour on the routes Hanko–Rostock and Hanko–Gdynia.
Finnlines as a key collaborator in Horse Show
The Helsinki International Horse Show gathers worlds’ best riders and most fantastic horses in Finland every year. Many of the horses arrive on Finnlines’ ships as Finnlines is a Golden Partner and a HIHS’ Official Carrier for the event.
Smooth travel is critical for transportation of horses as they are not only top competitors, but also worth enormous sums of money.
The ship’s crew has the task of placing horse trailers and vans on the car deck so that there is an easy access to a water tap and good ventilation. The trailer shall not be exposed to any adverse weather as horses get stressed easily and may suffer from hypothermia or have heatstroke in unpleasant conditions.
As the crew is not trained to tend four-legged passengers, it is a requirement that horses are accompanied by grooms or attendants, who check the well-being of horses and feed them during the sea voyage.
In October 2023, the four-day event, which is the largest indoor sports event in Finland, attracted over 51,000 visitors.