BC Ferries MV Spirit of British Columbia.jpg
Spirit of British Columbia
Name: Spirit of British Columbia
Namesake: British Columbia
Owner: British Columbia Ferry Services Inc.
Operator: British Columbia Ferry Services Inc.
Port of registry: Victoria, British Columbia
Route: TsawwassenSwartz Bay
Builder: Integrated Ferry, Esquimalt
Yard number: 559
Launched: 17 April 1992
Completed: February 1993
In service: 1993
Refit: 2018
Homeport: Tsawwassen
Status: Active
General characteristics
Class and type: S-class ferry
Tonnage: 18,747 GT
Displacement: 11,642 t (11,458 long tons; 12,833 short tons)
  • 167.5 m (549 ft 6 in) oa
  • 156.0 m (511 ft 10 in) pp
Beam: 32.9 m (107 ft 11 in)
Decks: 7
Deck clearance: 4.42 m (14 ft 6 in) for lower car decks
Installed power:
  • 4 × Wärtsilä 8L34DF engines
  • 21,394 hp (15,954 kW)
Propulsion: 2 controllable pitch propellers and 2 bow thrusters
Speed: 19.5 knots (36.1 km/h; 22.4 mph)
  • 2,100 passengers & crew
  • 358 cars

MV Spirit of British Columbia is an S-class ferry, part of the BC Ferries fleet active along the British Columbia coast. She and Spirit of Vancouver Island represent the two largest ships in the fleet. She was completed in 1993, and serves the TsawwassenSwartz Bay route. In 2018, the ship underwent a mid-life refit that included conversion to a dual-fuel system that allows it to use either marine diesel oil or liquefied natural gas.


Spirit of British Columbia is an S-class ferry that measures 167.5 m (549 ft 6 in) long overall and 156.0 m (511 ft 10 in) between perpendiculars with a beam of 32.9 m (107 ft 11 in). The vessel has a 18,747 gross tonnage (GT), 2,925 tons deadweight (DWT) and a displacement of 11,642 tonnes (11,458 long tons; 12,833 short tons).[1][2] The gross tonnage later increased to 21,958 as of 2018.[3]

The ferry was initially powered by four MAN 6L40/54[4] diesel engines driving two shafts creating 21,394 horsepower (15,954 kW).[1][2] Spirit of British Columbia has a maximum speed of 19.5 knots (36.1 km/h; 22.4 mph). In 2018, the ferry began a mid-life refit that involved changing the propulsion system to a dual-fuel system comprising four Wärtsilä 34DF dual-fuel engines which allows the ship to use either marine diesel oil or liquefied natural gas to power the ship.[5] Further changes include navigation and propulsion equipment, steering and evacuation systems, lighting and air conditioning. Passenger areas were upgraded including the lounges, bathrooms and retail areas.[6][7]

The ferry has capacity for 2,100 passengers and crew and 358 automobiles. The ferry is equipped with lounges and cafes.[2]

Service history

Spirit of British Columbia was constructed in two parts in British Columbia. The ferry's forepart was built by Allied Shipbuilders of North Vancouver with the yard number 254. The rest of the ship was constructed by Integrated Ferry of Esquimalt, British Columbia with the yard number 559. The two sections were joined and the vessel was launched on 17 April 1992 and completed in February 1993.[1] Owned and operated by British Columbia Ferry Services Inc. along the British Columbia Coast, Spirit of British Columbia was assigned to the TsawwassenSwartz Bay route.[2]

From 2005 to 2006, the S-class ferries underwent major refits.[8]

In late 2017, Spirit of British Columbia departed for Poland to undergo her mid-life refit. The refit included conversion to dual-fuel propulsion. The $140 million refit was completed by Remontowa Ship Repair Yard in Gdansk. The ferry returned to service in June 2018.[7][9]


  1. ^ a b c "Spirit of British Columbia (9015668)". Miramar Ship Index. Retrieved 9 February 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d "Spirit of British Columbia". British Columbia Ferry Services. Archived from the original on 9 February 2019. Retrieved 9 February 2019.
  3. ^ "Spirit of British Columbia (9015668)". Equasis. French Ministry for Transport. Retrieved 9 February 2019.
  4. ^ "Marine Investigation Report M00W0220: Collision Between Passenger/Vehicle Ferry Spirit of Vancouver Island and Pleasure Craft Star Ruby Colburne Passage, British Columbia 14 September 2000" (PDF). Transportation Safety Board of Canada. Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  5. ^ "Wartsila tech ordered for BC Ferries vessels LNG conversion". LNG World News. Archived from the original on 2 February 2019. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  6. ^ Wilson, Carla (7 September 2017). "B.C.-built Spirit ferry going to Poland for refit, dual-fuel conversion". Victoria Times Colonist. Archived from the original on 2 February 2019. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  7. ^ a b Chan, Kenneth (5 June 2018). "BC Ferries' Spirit of British Columbia vessel returns to service after upgrade in Poland". dailyhive.com. Archived from the original on 2 February 2019. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  8. ^ "Ferry fire disrupts Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay trips". CBC News. 10 October 2009. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
  9. ^ "Spirit of British Columbia ferry back in service, now running on natural gas". CTV News. The Canadian Press. 6 June 2018. Archived from the original on 9 February 2019. Retrieved 9 February 2019.

External links

  • Media related to Spirit of British Columbia (ship, 1993) at Wikimedia Commons
  • BC Ferries: Spirit of British Columbia