|Steel motor vessel
|Newcastle State Dockyard
|Gross weight :
|70.40 x 13.06 (metres)
|Passenger capacity :
Narrabeen is one of the original three Freshwater class of Manly
ferries introduced in 1984 to replace the aging North Head &
Baragoola. Identical to Freshwater & Queenscliff, as originally
built she had closed in fore & aft decks. These were opened up in a
later refit. Collaroy, the fourth ferry, already had these open decks.
Operational faults that had been discovered in Freshwater &
Queenscliff had mostly been fixed by the time Narrabeen was launched.
As a result, she did not have many of the early problems that the other
Students at Narrabeen Primary School petitioned the state government to
give the new ferry her name & when she entered service she became
the third Manly vessel to be named Narrabeen.
The addition of the Narrabeen to the fleet finally gave the UTA the
opportunity to run a half hour timetable on three standard ships,
something that had not happened since prior to the takeover by
of the Port Jackson company.
Narrabeen didn't wait very long before getting herself into trouble.
One month after her launch on the 12/09/84 she tore through the shark
proof netting at Manly Wharf. The new net had only been put up the day
before following a similar accident by the Freshwater. Not long after,
she became stranded in the middle of Manly Cove. The Dutch company that
had provided the steering & control systems for the new ferries
finally ironed out the problems & all three settled into a trouble
free & regular service.
On Thursday 26 May 2005, the Narrabeen commenced its regular passenger
service between Circular Quay and Manly. The first journey left the
Quay at 6.45am, arriving at Manly at 7.30am. The vessel made another
five return journeys to Circular Quay without incident. About 12.10pm,
the vessel passed to the north of Fort Dennison and entered the Sydney
Cove Limit, which is bounded by a line running between Bennelong Point
and Dawes Point, with the Master intending to berth the vessel at
Number 3 Wharf. On entering the Sydney Cove Limit, the Master was
unable to fully control the vessel. Realising a collision was imminent,
he sounded the vessel’s whistle continuously until the point at which
the vessel’s mid bow collided with the north-eastern corner of the
Number 5 Wharf.
At the time of the collision, a First Fleet class ferry was in the
process of disembarking its passengers. The Narrabeen’s whistle alerted
those on Number 5 Wharf and it was quickly evacuated. Immediately after
impact, the Narrabeen was brought under control by the Master and
manoeuvred alongside Wharf Number 3 and passengers were disembarked. As
a result of the collision a passenger, seated at the outside forward
mid deck, received facial injuries when she was struck in the face by
the forward Jack Staff (flag pole), which had been torn off during the
collision. The Narrabeen sustained structural damage to the bow area,
including damage to the hull which allowed ballast water to escape.
There was also some structural damage to Number 5 Wharf. Following
repairs, she was returned to service in July.