Pacific Encounter, the latest addition to P&O Australia's fleet to continue the revival of the country’s $5 billion a year cruise industry, sailed on Tuesday, August 2, into Sydney Harbour (NSW) offering a salute to ‘hero tugs’ and maritime champions that help keep waters safe.
Amid jets from water cannon tugs, the gleaming vessel entered the harbor led by the fire tug of the Port Authority of NSW and flanked by 3 privately operated tugs that were involved in a ship rescue off Sydney's coast.
The ‘encounter’ of Pacific Encounter with Sydney will be brief as the vessel is due to be homeported in Brisbane (Queensland Australia) following a long P&O Cruises tradition of basing vessels there to enable Queenslanders to sail from their doorstep.
3 Engage Towage-operated tugs - Diamantina, Fitzroy, and Martinique - were part of the Pacific Encounter's escort. The trio and their stalwart crews were involved in an operation to save bulk carrier Portland Bay after it had lost power in stormy weather last month.
As the Pacific Encounter ship entered Sydney Harbour, ‘HERO TUGS!!!’ flashed up on her top deck screen.
The time of Pacific Encounter in Sydney will be of economic benefit to the port city with local marine engineering/technical services coming onboard and more than half a million kilograms of local produce being loaded to commence the cruising program of the ship.