Update 47

Fifty, not out

Bass Island Line (BIL) is looking forward to another milestone next month: producing the 50th edition of the BIL Update. It’s part of our commitment to engaging with you, whether you’re a customer, stakeholder of member of the King Island community.

We know that face-to-face interactions are especially important. That is why representatives from BIL and TasPorts meet regularly with key King Island stakeholders to discuss their needs.

In fact, we have visited King Island every month for the past five months. During that time we attended in excess of 45 meetings with over 35 key stakeholders (sometimes on more than one occasion) representing more than 20 organisations. This level of engagement will continue into the future.

BIL also launched a new website last year to ensure BIL schedules and information is up-to-date and easy to access.

New vessel arrives

 John Duigan at Bell Bay

 There is now a lot of anticipation about the arrival of BIL’s new bigger freight vessel – John Duigan. She is now berthed at Bell Bay in northern Tasmania after a successful voyage from Malaysia.

“She proved herself to be very reliable and efficient during the voyage,” said TasPorts Executive General Manager, Steven Clark.

The vessel will now complete final modifications in Tasmania before coming into service as soon as possible.

The route and the schedule

For several months, BIL has been saying that it intends John Duigan to sail southbound from Victoria once a week, to King Island and then onto a northern Tasmanian port. This has not changed.

Negotiations and the ports of call and the stevedoring arrangements are nearing completion. The details will be announced well before the new vessel comes into service, giving customers and stakeholders’ ample time to plan.


The new service will operate under a weekly schedule. We fully expect the new vessel to deliver improved schedule integrity. In the meantime, BIL continues to operate an effective service with the Investigator II.

Cars and passengers

When John Duigan comes into service there will be a protected stow for vehicles. There are currently no plans however to carry passengers. That is because BIL is focused on meeting freight needs.

The schedule

 The next three sailings are as follows:

  • Saturday 3 March: General sailing – Depart Devonport 1.30pm
  • Sunday 4 March: General sailing – Depart Grassy 1:30pm
  • Monday 5 March: General sailing – Depart Devonport 1:30pm

Update 47 full PDF available here.