Shipbuilding company Metal Shark has completed the construction of two high-speed passenger ferries for the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority (RTA) in Louisiana, US.

The aluminium catamaran passenger vessels, RTA 1 and RTA 2, are 105ft-long and designed to carry 150 passengers.

In July, Metal Shark delivered the first vessel to New Orleans RTA. The company is expected to deliver RTA 2 at the discretion of New Orleans RTA.

Metal Shark has used its shipyard in Franklin, Louisiana, to build RTA 2, which underwent the US Coast Guard inspections at the same yard last month.

Following deployment, both the ferries will replace New Orleans RTA’s outdated ferries that are currently operated across the city.

Powered by a pair of 715hp Cat C-18 Tier 3 diesel engines, the ferries are equipped with low wake/low wash, high-efficiency hull designs for reduced environmental impact.

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“In the past 18 months, we have delivered over 14 150-passenger and 350-passenger ferries to New York, Washington, DC.”

BMT Designers and Planners has designed the RTA-compliant vessels.

RTA 1 and RTA 2 are developed to abide by the United States Coast Guard’s (USCG) Subchapter ‘T’ rules.

Metal Shark CEO Chris Allard said: “In the past 18 months, we have delivered over 14 150-passenger and 350-passenger ferries to New York, Washington, DC, and now New Orleans.

“As a local Louisiana company, it has been an honour to build these modern, comfortable new vessels for the people of New Orleans and visitors from around the world.”