‘It’s a huge difference. We’ve been plucked from the old days and dropped into the computer age. Engey is an unbelievable ship that we’re still learning about. It’s very comfortable for the crew and the new bow design has certainly proved its worth. Ásbjörn was a good ship, but still rolled a good bit in bad weather, but now there’s hardly any movement at all,’ said Friðleifur Einarsson, skipper of HB Grandi’s new trawler Engey.
When we caught up with him, Engey was fishing west of Straumnes off the Westfjords of Iceland.
Engey was delivered in Turkey in January, the first of three fresher trawlers built at the Celiktrans yard for HB Grandi. That left the work of fitting the fish handling systems and the unmanned fishroom to be completed by Skaginn 3X in Akranes. Engey started fishing in the summer and the crew have been steadily getting to grips with the sophisticated computer systems that manage fishing and catch handling.
According to Friðleifur Einarsson, learning how to handle the ship and its equipment has gone well, although he said that he freely admits that it hasn’t been an easy process.
The present trip started on redfish on the Mountains off the Reykjanes peninsula.
‘Fishing was reasonable, and we have to bear in mind that we’re into the darkest time of year and it’s generally thought to be good to get any redfish under these conditions. Then we headed northwards and have been mainly fishing cod on the Westfjords grounds. We didn’t search for redfish, but there is saithe around, although we haven’t looked much for that. To catch saithe you need to spend time on searching for them, but this trip’s allocation was redfish and cod,’ Friðleifur Einarsson said, adding that they expect to dock in Reykjavík on Wednesday.