Port of Vancouver USA welcomed the Saga Odyssey, commanded by Captain Timothy J. Smith of Yorkshire, England, on its maiden voyage to the port.

Smith, who has been sailing for 30 years, and the 23-member crew were welcomed to Vancouver by Lance Thain, marine operations manager for Merit Steamship Agency, Inc.; John Cross, port captain for Saga Forest Carriers International A.S., Nick Haindl, superintendent for Ports America, Stan Smith, surveyor for MMK International Marine Services Inc. , along with port representatives Lars Uglum, Mike Kesler, Erika Chamberlain, Shawna Wilkins, Katie Odem, Michelle Allan and Debbie Taylor. Chief Engineer Gordon Blair from Scotland, who has been sailing for over 40 years, will be retiring after the completion of this current voyage. The Saga Odyssey was built in Japan and delivered in May 2008. It is nearly 654 feet in length, has deadweight of 46,550 tons, has 10 holds and hatches and two 42-ton gantry cranes. The crew for the vessel’s first visit to the Port of Vancouver USA, was from England, Scotland and the Philippines.

The vessel discharged approximately 9,500 metric tons of steel from the Far East and Asian ports at Port of Vancouver’s Terminal 3, stevedored by Ports America.

The Saga Odyssey is owned by Saga Shipholding (Norway) S.A. and operated by Saga Forest Carriers. Saga Forest Carriers is represented locally by Merit Steamship Agency, Inc.

Saga continues to develop and expand its trading areas and customer base and is currently operating a fleet of 26 sophisticated open-hatch gantry craned vessels. Saga has almost fulfilled one of the most extensive new building programs in the industry. Saga has taken delivery of eight of the nine new buildings of the “Adventure Class” in the period from 2005 to 2008 and has yet to take delivery of one additional vessel from Oshima Shipbuilding, Ltd., Japan in 2008. The vessels in the “Adventure Class” series are; Saga Adventure, Saga Discovery, Saga Explorer, Saga Enterprise, Saga Frontier, Saga Journey, Saga Navigator, Saga Odyssey and Saga Pioneer (expected to be delivered later this year).

After leaving the Port of Vancouver USA, the vessel sailed to Portland, OR, New Westminster and Vancouver, BC, where she will discharge steel and load bulk products for Europe.