The Super Shuttle Ferry 12

When I look at Super Shuttle Ferry 12 of the Asian Marine Transport Corp. (AMTC) I know there is an anomaly there, and no offense meant. To me, she looks like as an extended version of the basic, short-distance ferry RORO — almost the same breadth at 10 meters, the single passenger deck with the bridge on the same level, the same single car deck accessed by a single, stern RORO ramp and not by a bow ramp(and this is another small difference). The only major differences are she has a length of over 50 meters and she has two side funnels which signifies twin engines. And because of that she is also faster than a basic, short-distance ferry-RORO.

Another significance I see in Super Shuttle Ferry 12 is she was assigned the Dumaguete-Dapitan route connecting Negros and Mindanao ever since she arrived in the Philippines in 2007 while other ferries of AMTC are often rotated (maybe except for some of their Camiguin ferries). And when she first arrived in that route she was probably the best ship in there aside from being the newest if computed from Date of Built (DOB).

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Photo Credit: James Gabriel Verallo

The Super Shuttle Ferry 12 was built in 1983 as the Ferry Tarama of the Tarama Kaiun shipping company. Her builder was Usuki Tekkosho in Usuki, Japan and she was given the permanent ID IMO Number 8217817. That number means her keel was laid in 1982 but she was completed in 1983. Tarama Islands, from what I understand is in the Okinawa group, a place of rough seas and high waves and maybe Ferry Tarama‘s exceptional depth (for her size) of 6.0 meters was meant to cope with that.

Ferry Tarama‘s external dimensions are 53.0 meters length over-all (LOA), 48.0 meters length between perpendiculars (LBP) and a breadth of 10.4 meters. Her dimensional weights are 324 in gross tonnage (GT) and 220 in net tonnage (NT) with a deadweight tonnage (DWT) of 260 tons. She has 2 x 1,350-horsepower Niigata engines (for a total of 2,700 horsepower) which gave her a top speed of 14 knots when new (which is significantly higher than the 10-11 knots of the basic, short-distance ferry-ROROs).

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Photo Credit: Jonathan Bordon

This ship has a steel hull with a stern ramp as access to the car deck. She has two masts, a single passenger deck, a bulbous stem and a raked transom stern. Her bridge is not elevated and is located as the same level of the passenger deck. Her sides are high and maybe that was designed for the high waves of the Ryukyus. The ship has full scantling. I also noticed that her masts are very high.

As a side note, Ferry Tarama was built in the same shipyard as the Ferry Izena, a ferry of Izena island in the same Okinawa group, in the same year. Ferry Izena became the Kristel Jane 3, a Zamboanga-Bongao ship of Aleson Shipping Lines. The two ships have some resemblance including the raked stern although they are not sister ships and Kristel Jane 3 is a twin-passenger-deck ship although she is actually shorter than Ferry Tarama . And that is another proof why I think Super Shuttle Ferry 12 is an anomaly. Most of the ferries with her length have twin passenger decks.

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After 24 years of service in Okinawan waters, Ferry Tarama was acquired by Asian Marine Transport Corporation (AMTC) of Cebu. Not much was altered in her superstructure except to extend the passenger deck so she can have an Economy Class. With that her gross tonnage should have increased but it remained at 324. The airconditioned Japan accommodations then became the Tourist Class and so she is became a two-class, short-distance ferry-RORO with sitting accommodations.

Immediately, she was fielded in the Dumaguete-Dapitan route of Asian Marine Transport Corporation which was then beginning to boom and which needed a bigger ship to handle the sometimes rough habagat (southwest monsoon) waves coming from Sulu Sea. This straight dividing Negros island and Mindanao is also sometimes rough during the amihan (northeast monsoon) season or whenever there is a storm somewhere in the eastern seaboard of the country. When she was fielded there she was the fastest ferry in the route.

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When she came and their Ciara Joie was outclassed, their competitor Aleson Shipping Lines fielded the newly-refurbished (in the engine department) Danica Joy in able to match Super Shuttle Ferry12. Now Super Shuttle Ferry 12 is not only up against those two ships of Aleson Shipping (sometimes a Trisha Kerstin ship replaces Danica Joy) but also against the re-engined Reina Veronica of Montenegro Shipping Lines. Danica Joy or a Trisha Kerstin (there are three ships with that name) can match Super Shuttle Ferry 12 in speed as they are not basic, short-distance ferry-ROROs and they are twin-engined too. Also a new competitor against her in the route is the dangerous, newly-arrived FastCat of Archipelago Ferries Philippine Corporation (I just did not name the ferry specifically as they always rotate ships).

Super Shuttle Ferry 12 has one round trip a day in the Dumaguete-Dapitan route. Her Dumaguete departure is at 5pm and her Dapitan departure is at 5am. As a RORO ship in a short-distance ferry route, her cargo mainly consists of vehicles. She takes a little less than 4 hours for the 44-nautical mile route. This route is a profitable run for the ROROs there as there is enough load especially of trucks which are mainly trader or distributor trucks and fish carriers. And the charge on trucks in the country is really high as unlike in Europe the local rates are not computed by lane-meters.

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Super Shuttle Ferry 12 is a very reliable ship and almost never misses her schedule except when she is on drydock and that happens every two years. Her last drydock was on the summer of 2015 in Mandaue. She was there when we visited the Asian Marine Transport Corporation wharf in Mandaue but we can’t get aboard as her car deck was being painted.

She is now back on her route again. I think she would sail her route for a long time more unless she is assigned another route but this is unlikely as speed and a little size is needed there, attributes that Super Shuttle Ferry 12 has.

She is a good fit there but she better be wary of the new but dangerous FastCat which is much faster, has bigger capacity than her and sails three round trips a day.

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Photo Credit: Janjan Salas

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The Cargo RORO Specialist of the Philippines

Cargo RORO (or RORO Cargo) ships are vessels that carry rolling cargo (light and heavy vehicles or container vans on chassis) and tracked vehicles like heavy equipment. For that, these ships have ramps and several levels of car decks connected by ramps on the inside or by lifts. They basically differ from container ships on two counts. One, the Cargo RORO ships wheel in their load while container ships handle their load LOLO (Load On, Load Off). In layman’s term that means lifting the container vans by the use of booms or by gantry cranes (sometimes a reach stacker or cranes are also used). Second, a significant number of the load of Cargo RORO ships are vehicles. Since those vehicles have drivers in many cases, Cargo RORO ships have a small passenger accommodations (mainly small cabins) for the owners or the truckers. Some amenities are provided for them too.

Cargo RORO ships differ from Pure Car Carriers (PCCs) and vehicle carriers in that the latter two basically carry new vehicles for delivery to overseas divisions of car companies and to car dealers. So in general the two latter-named are accompanied by just a few drivers or maybe by none at all.

In the world, it is in Europe where there is a highest concentration of Cargo RORO ships. It spans from Northern Europe to Southern Europe and the Mediterranean Sea which connects Europe to North Africa. Even the Black Sea has Cargo RORO ships. These Cargo RORO ships of Europe serve as the “bridges of the sea” for the European truckers and the tourists who brought along their vehicles.

Japan also has Cargo RORO ships but not to the extent of the proliferation in Europe. Other areas of the world also have that kind of ship but also not to the extent of concentration of Europe.

Cargo RORO or RORO Cargo ships have not been used before in any significant number in the Philippines. Those that came before were converted to RORO-passenger (ROPAX) ships like what Carlos A. Gothong Lines did with the MV Our Lady of Sacred Heart and MV Our Lady of Medjugorje. Before the two came, there was the MV Wilcon 1 and MV Wilcon 4 of William Lines and the MV Sinulog of Escano Lines but those were ROLO Cargo or Cargo LOLO ships which means they have ramps for rolling cargo and cargo booms for the container vans. The three had limited passenger accommodations and are all gone now. In recent years there were also a few ROLO Cargo ships that were acquired by other shipping companies but they do not carry passengers.

The first local shipping company that invested in a series of Cargo RORO ships was Sulpicio Lines. Between 1997 and 2002 that company acquired the MV Sulpicio Express Uno, the MV Sulpicio Express Dos and the MV Sulpicio Express Tres. However, those three Cargo RORO ships are now all gone to the breakers and only recently. Maybe Philippine Span Asia Carrier Corp. (PSACC), the current name now of Sulpicio Lines realized that the engines of the three were too big for its container capacity.

In recent years, there was a shipping company which seems to have decided they will make their mark in using Cargo RORO ships. This is the Asian Marine Transport Corporation (AMTC) of Cebu. Their first three ships in their Super Shuttle RORO series were either Cargo RORO ships or vehicle carriers. However, they converted all three as RORO-Passenger (ROPAX) ships here but their passenger capacities were not as big as MV Our Lady of Sacred Heart and MV Our Lady of Medjugorje. Maybe that decision was affected by the fact that liner passengers are no longer as numerous compared to the 1990’s and that they were just beginning in liner shipping (but in short-distance RORO shipping they have already been awhile already).

Starting with the next ship in the series, the MV Super Shuttle RORO 5, Asian Marine Transport no longer converted the ship to carry passengers. And this became the pattern from MV Super Shuttle RORO 6 (which was a barge carrier and not a Cargo RORO ship) to MV Super Shuttle RORO 12 (which were all Cargo RORO ships). Recently, an MV Super Shuttle RORO 14 arrived for them which has not yet been refitted. There is no Super Shuttle RORO 4 or 13 in the series because those numbers supposedly bring bad luck. Meanwhile, MV Super Shuttle RORO 6 is not sailing because of an engine room fire while in the shipyard and it is not sailing because of a dispute in the settlement between the company and the shipyard.

All the Cargo RORO ships of Asian Marine Transport Corp. (AMTC) from “5” to “14” were just acquired starting in 2012. So that means the push of AMTC in container shipping was relatively recent (but the first three in the series can also carry container vans but they were not yet big then in container shipping). Their container vans are brand-new and most were chartered from Waterfront Leasing, a company specializing in the rental of container vans.

These Cargo RORO ships of Asian Marine Transport Corp. were all built in Europe except for MV Super Shuttle RORO 7 and the MV Super Shuttle RORO 11 which were built in Japan. Although the ships are no longer young, all are still sailing reliably except for the fire-hit MV Super Shuttle RORO 6. Generally, the load of the ships are container vans, both aboard chassis and not. Cars and SUVs (sports utility vehicles) are also loaded and the bulk of these are brand-new and which are destined for car dealers in Visayas and Mindanao.

The ports of origin of the Cargo RORO ships of Asian Marine Transport Corp. are Manila and Batangas. Most of their Cargo RORO ships would then call in Cebu. They also have a route that passes through Iloilo and Bacolod. Their ports of call in Mindanao are Davao, General Santos City, Zamboanga, Cagayan de Oro and Nasipit.

The Cargo RORO ships of Asian Marine Transport Corp. are not cargo liners in the strict sense of the word as they can be flexible in departures according to the load and their route assignment is not really fixed and it is sometimes intervened by radio from the main office. That also means their arrivals in a particular port are also not fixed.

These are the particulars of the Cargo RORO ships of Asian Marine Transport Corporation:

Super Shuttle RORO 5 (arrived 2012)

Original name is Tajura. IMO 7822500.

Built by Neue Schlichting Werft in Travemunde, Germany in 1980.

Dimensions are 114.0 meters by 17.5 meters by 11.7 meters.

Dimensional weights are 6,105 gross tons and 2,900 deadweight tons.

Engines and Speed: 2 X 2,200hp MaK diesels. 16 knots top speed, originally.

Super Shuttle RORO 6 (arrived 2012)

Original name is Este Submerger II of J. Hauschildt. IMO 8324701.

Built by Rickmers in Bremerhaven, Germany in 1984.

Dimensions are 106.0 meters by 19.6 meters by 10.9 meters.

Dimensional weights are 6,786 gross tons and 4,490 deadweight tons.

Engines and Speed: 2 x 1,820hp Krupp-MaK diesels. 13 knots top speed.

Super Shuttle RORO 7 (arrived 2012)

Original name is Dia Ace. IMO 9117727.

Built by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Shimoneseki, Japan in 1994.

Dimensions are 146.0 meters by 23.4 meters by 13.2 meters.

Dimensional weights are 13,540 gross tons and 4,339 deadweight tons.

Engine and Speed: 1 x 6,900hp NKK-Pielstick diesel. 17 knots top speed.

Super Shuttle RORO 8 (arrived 2012)

Original name is Dana Cimbria. IMO 8413992.

Built by Frederikshavns Vft in Frederikshavns, Denmark in 1986.

Dimensions are 145.0 meters by 21.6 meters by 12.1 meters.

Dimensional weights are 12,189 gross tons and 6,897 deadweight tons.

Engine and Speed: 1 x 7,800hp MaK diesel. 17.5 knots top speed, originally.

Super Shuttle RORO 9 (arrived 2013)

Original name is Bore Queen of Bore Line. IMO 7902647.

Built by Rauma-Repola in Rauma, Finland in 1980.

Dimensions are 170.9 meters by 23.0 meters by 17.5 meters.

Dimensional weights are 17,884 gross tons and 11,400 deadweight tons.

Engines and Speed: 2 MaK diesels. Total: 16,000hp. 19 knots top speed.

Super Shuttle RORO 10 (arrived 2014)

Original name is Finnmerchant. IMO 8020684.

Built by Rauma-Repole in Rauma, Finland in 1982.

Dimensions are 157.6 meters by 25.3 meters by 17.3 meters.

Dimensional weights are 20,865 gross tons and 13,866 deadweight tons.

Engines and Speed: 2 x 7,500hp Wartsila diesels. 19 knots top speed.

Super Shuttle RORO 11 (arrived 2014)

Original name is Dana Caribia. IMO 7725166.

Built by Nippon Kokan KK in Shimizu, Japan in 1979.

Dimensions are 161.4 meters by 24.2 meters by 14.3 meters.

Dimensional weights are 14,805 gross tons and 10,470 deadweight tons.

Engines and Speed: 2 x 3,950hp Burmeister & Wain (B&W) diesels. 15 knots.

Super Shuttle RORO 12 (arrived 2015)

Original name is Mercandian Gigant of Per Henriksen. IMO 8222733.

Built by Danyard A/S in Frederikshavn, Denmark in 1984.

Dimensions are 160.5 meters by 20.7 meters by 12.3 meters.

Dimensional weights are 14,410 gross tons and 9,200 deadweight tons.

Engine and Speed: 1 x 6,500 Mak diesel. 16 knots top speed, originally.

This ship was formerly the ROCON I of William Lines which came in 1995. In the great merger that produced the WG&A Philippines she was renamed to SuperRORO 200. She was sold abroad in 1997.

Super Shuttle RORO 14 (arrived 2016)

Original name is Mercury Ace. IMO 8509466.

Built by Usuki Tekkosho in Usuki, Japan in 1985.

Dimensions are 96.9 meters x 20.2 meters.

Dimensional weights are 6,974 gross tons and 3,199 deadweight tons.

Engine and Speed: 1 marine diesel. 13.5 top speed, originally.

A total of 9 Cargo RORO ships. The purchases of those Cargo RORO ships were mainly backed by the government-owned Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP).

In the main, each carry about 300 TEUs in a voyage plus vehicles in the top deck (and some on the bottom deck at the engine level). Asian Marine Transport System now has a spic and span terminal in Batangas under the name of Super Shuttle RORO, a brand they are now developing. In Cebu, however, they are looking for a new hub as they are leaving their old hub and port in Pier 8 in Mandaue, Cebu.

I just hope Asian Marine Transport System don’t find the engine size/fuel consumption to container capacity of the Cargo ROROs difficult to manage. With the way they are running the ships where there are long in-port hours, the advantage of Cargo RORO ships which is fast loading and unloading is in the main neutralized. They sometimes sail on one engine to save on fuel but one advantage of their fleet is it has the speed to turn or when needed. Container ships in the Philippines might have small engines but they don’t have the speed really (except for a few). On one hand though their top decks (and bottom decks) are really good for carrying vehicles and that is their advantage over the container ships.

This Cargo RORO experiment of Asian Marine Transport System is worth watching and studying.

The Sweet Lines Ships That Went to Viva Shipping Lines

Sweet Lines was a Central Visayas shipping company of Bohol origin so Bol-anons were rightly proud of her. It also had a cargo liner company (which means fixed routes and schedules) named Central Shipping Company aside from cargo ships too in the Sweet Lines fleet. Sweet Lines started from Visayas-Mindanao routes till they graduated to liner shipping. They were able to do that by acquiring half of the fleet and franchises of the General Shipping Company which moved out of passenger liner shipping in the middle of the 1960’s. From such move, Sweet Lines was able to get routes and ships to Manila.

For a generation Sweet Lines did well in liner shipping. They had all the trappings and signs then of a successful liner company including Japanese agents and big liners. One thing that distinguishes them from competition was that they have a strong Visayas-Mindanao shipping then, as a result of their origins (long before Lite Ferries they dominated Bohol routes). In this regard, they were comparable to Carlos A. Gothong Lines Inc. (CAGLI) after the complete split of the original Go Thong shipping company when Lorenzo Shipping Company parted ways with them. However, Sweet Lines was stronger than them and they had true national presence while CAGLI didn’t have that after 1978 since it was Lorenzo Shipping Company which held the Southern Mindanao routes after their final split. Besides, Sweet Lines had its own cargo shipping company which even dabbled in Asian routes for a while. In passenger shipping, they were even ahead of Aboitiz Shipping Company but the latter had a strong cargo and containerized operation which was ahead of Sweet Lines and Central Shipping.

It seems Sweet Lines did not survive well the crisis decade of the 1980’s. I am one of those which did not foresee their fall. There were some distant nasty rumors then but I found it hard to believe as there are always unfounded rumors in shipping. But then they did not acquire great liners at the start of the 1990’s when even Aboitiz Shipping Company (which had a reputation before of not buying decent liners) also bought theirs when the new administration in Malacanang of President Fidel Ramos laid out incentives for shipping purchase and modernization. That was only then when I began to have the feeling they were sliding, a feeling I got before when the old liner shipping company Escano Lines went out of passenger shipping.

When I was in Mindoro I tend to watch liners passing by. That was my pastime and it was really such a great sight and pleasure for a ship lover. There, I already noticed the liners of Sweet Lines were already being outgunned by the new and newer great liners of the competition. The passing Sweet Lines vessels were generally older, smaller and slower compared to the competition and I was not the only one who noticed that.

Sometime in 1994 I heard from dock hands in Mindoro that the brown ships of Sweet Lines seem not to be passing by. On that place, we actually didn’t know the reason why. Cebu is far from Mindoro, there is no connection between the two places as the Cebu ships just pass by without calling. Later, we heard the news that Sweet Lines stopped sailing but it was more of an unconfirmed news. A few speculated they might have just dropped their Manila route.

One day, I think it was in the month of September, I arrived nighttime in Batangas port. I noticed three brown ships tied at the far end of the quay. I asked what ships were they (it was actually dark – Batangas port was not yet developed then). The porter told me those were Sweet Lines ships sold to the Viva Shipping Lines (VSL). We were hurrying as the last bus going to Manila at 11pm is leaving so I just thought I will see them again when I come back to Batangas.

At that time, Viva Shipping Lines was the dominant shipping company of Southern Tagalog (there was no separate region of MIMAROPA yet). It had two sister legal-fiction companies, the Sto. Domingo Shipping Company and DR Shipping Company. Together, all three operated over thirty vessels including wooden motor boats called the “batel” in that area. They were so dominant the other shipping companies feared them. Below-the-belt and bullying tactics were routinely ascribed to them also. As to financial muscle, nobody doubted they were capable of buying three moderately-sized second-hand ferries.

Actually, the three vessels from Sweet Lines fit exactly the ship size needed by Viva Shipping Lines. The three vessels were also badly needed and in fact after they were fielded Southern Tagalog routes still lacked ships. That was how deep were our shortage of bottoms then in the short-distance routes when the new short-distance RORO mode was already beginning to fly. This shortage was actually the result of the calamitous decade of the 1980’s for shipping when we lost so many shipping companies, so many ships including the retirement of the former “FS” ships.

The Viva Shipping Lines had two base ports – Batangas and Lucena – and they had routes to various ports of Mindoro, the Romblon islands, Marinduque and even far-off Masbate. Their wooden motor boats (the batel) also had routes to the various island-towns in the Sibuyan Sea and to Occidental Mindoro. They also had semi-scheduled routes to Burias island and to various ports in the the southern coast of Bicol from Bondoc Peninsula in Quezon province. From Bondoc Peninsula their motor boats ranged up to Marinduque and Lucena. The origin of Viva Shipping Lines was actually Bondoc Peninsula, specifically Villa Reyes in San Narciso, Quezon.

Later, I was asked in Philippine Ship Spotters Society (PSSS) what happened to the ships sold by Sweet Lines to Batangas and what happened to them. This got me interested again in the three brown ships I saw in Batangas and to which I have sailed with the the subsequent years.

The three ships were of moderate size in the Sweet Lines fleet but in Viva Shipping they were already among the largest. The three were the Sweet Pride, the last ship ever acquired by Sweet Lines, in 1991; the Sweet Pearl, acquired in 1989; the Sweet Marine, acquired in 1988. They became the Viva Penafrancia 5, the Viva Penafrancia 3 and the Viva Penafrancia 8, respectively. Later, the Viva Penafrancia 5 and Viva Penafrancia 8 became very well known in Batangas and Calapan.

Sweet Pride was originally the Seikan Maru No. 5 of Higashi Nippon Ferry in Japan. She was built by Taguma Zosen in Innoshima, Japan in 1968 with the ID IMO 6908254. She measured 68.0 meters x 14.2 meters and 1,500gt with 2 x 1,300hp Daihatsu engines and 15.5 knots in speed. As Viva Penafrancia 5, she had a sitting passenger capacity of 900.

Sweet Pearl was originally the Ashizuri of Sukomo Kanko Kisen KK in Japan. She was built Usuki Tekkosho in Usuki, Japan in 1971 with the ID IMO 7126009. She measured 69.7 meters x 13.6 meters and 1,275gt with 2 x 2,000hp Niigata engines and 16 knots in speed. As Viva Penafrancia 3, she had a sitting passenger capacity of 802.

Sweet Marine was originally the Taikan Maru No. 3, also of Higashi Nippon Ferry in Japan. She was built by Shimoda Dockyard Company in Shimoda, Japan in 1968 with the ID IMO 6829197. She measured 60.0 meters x 12.8 meters and 913gt with 2 x 750hp Daihatsu engines and only 11 knots in speed. As Viva Penafrancia 8, she had a sitting passenger capacity of 762. This ferry was the sister ship of Asia Brunei (now Grand Unity of Navios Lines and formerly Blue Water Princess 2 of Blue Magic Ferries), Asia Indonesia (now Grand Venture 1 of Navios Lines) and Filipinas Dapitan of Cokaliong Shipping Lines Inc. I just wonder if in Batangas they realize that the ships of Navios Lines were sister ships of a ferry they once knew as Viva Penafrancia 3.

In the Sweet Lines fleet, the three were overnight ferry-ROROs and they were relatively big for that role in those days. In Viva Shipping Lines the three were converted to and became workhorses in the short-distance ferry routes of the company. In general, the three were not used for the overnight routes of Viva Shipping Lines.

The Viva Penafrancia 5, Viva Penafrancia 3 and Viva Penafrancia 8 all had successful careers in Viva Shipping Lines. Moreover, the three also became tools in the shipping wars for the continued dominance of Viva Shipping Lines in Southern Tagalog. When the three came for the company in 1994, Viva Shipping Lines still had complete dominance in the region. That was the time there was still lack of bottoms in the Southern Tagalog routes.

However, before the end of the last millennium there were already so many ferries in Batangas. Montenegro Shipping Lines Inc. (MSLI) was growing fast along with the new entrant Starlite Ferries Inc. There was also a slew of smaller shipping companies trying their luck in the area. The overcrowding was also exacerbated by the fast arrivals in the area of the High Speed Crafts (HSCs), both the catamaran and the fastcraft type and they had their own wars too. The area soon degenerated in a dog-eat-dog world or as the Tagalogs would say, “Matira ang matibay”.

As they said, no thing lasts forever. And events revealed that it was Viva Shipping Line which was “hindi matibay” (but of course, “patron saints” have their darlings too). In the early 2000’s, Viva Shipping Lines hit rock, so to say and they were in trouble. Maybe aside from “patron saints”, passenger resentments might have also tipped the scales. They gradually quit sailing and as they did that they left their ships in anchorage in Batangas Bay, in Lucena (they have a shipyard there) and in their original base of San Narciso, Quezon. They then put up their ships for sale.

In 2003, Viva Penafrancia 8 was sold to a Ernesto V. Mercado, a ship breaker followed by Viva Penafrancia 3, also to the same breaker in 2004. Meanwhile, Viva Penafrancia 5, the most regarded of the three was laid up in Elfa Shipyard in Navotas, Metro Manila. She might not be there now and she might have gone to the shipping heavens, too.

And that was the career of the three Sweet Lines ships that went to Viva Shipping Lines. They all died before their time not because they were not good. It was their companies that was not good enough for them.

Note: There was another Sweet Lines ship that went to Viva Shipping Lines in 1988, the second and Japan-built Sweet Faith, the ex-Hakodate Maru No. 11. She became the San Lorenzo Ruiz in Sto. Domingo Shipping Company. This transfer had no connection with the collapse of Sweet Lines, Inc.