A school sailing boat for the Navy Algeria was launched on Saturday (Nov 07) in Gdansk Repair Shipyard Shipbuilding. It is the thousandth of a unit built by the company.
The Masted frigate will be used for training cadets of the Algerian Maritime University. The vessel is 110 meters long and 14.5 meters wide. Sail surface is 3000 sq.M and is able to reach a top speed of 17 knots. It can take 222 people. The ship is named El-Mellah, which in Arabic means "sailor".
President of the Shipbuilding and Repair yard Andrzej Wojtkiewicz said Saturday that ship launching ceremony is important not only because of the fact that it is the thousandth unit constructed in the yard. "This ceremony coincides with the celebration of the 70th anniversary of our establishment."
"Also the customer is special, because the Navy Algeria is not a client, which can be found every day, not only in Polish shipyards, but even Europe" Wojtkiewicz, added that "El-Mellah" will be regarded as the largest and fastest sailing ships in the world.
In a speech before launching Col. Driss Bouraoui the Algerian Navy said that "for several years, Algeria has been the most important Polish partner on the African market." "The ship will constitute proof of our relations, both political and economic"
Wojtkiewicz told PAP that the contract with the Algerians aside from the construction of the ship, also includes training future members of the crew and cadets. It will be carried out in collaboration with the Maritime Academy in Gdynia and will last six months.
The President explained that as a part of the training Algerians will cruise a few weeks on its sister unit "Darze Młodzieży" in the Baltic Sea, under the supervision of Polish specialists.
"The ultimate goal of the training will be an independent cruise sailing to their country," - said the President.
Due to technological reasons during the launching sailboat was without masts. Wojtkiewicz said that the construction of the unit will continue until the fall of 2016., Then training will began. In addition to the functions of the training, the sailing ship will act as a representative of Algeria taking part in competitions and international events.
An incident took place during the launching ship. It was damaged part of the ramp lookout, where people stood watching the launching of the ship. One person fell down, hit her head. She was taken to hospital.