GLADSTONE Ports Corporation’s new pilot vessel, Goonanga, was recently honoured with a centuries-old blessing.

Goonanga, meaning black duck in the language of the Byellee peoples, will join the existing fleet of five pilot vessels that service the Port of Gladstone, Port of Bundaberg and Port of Rockhampton.

GPC acting CEO Craig Walker said the vessel was a much-anticipated addition to the fleet for the Gladstone Marine Pilot Services, a wholly owned subsidiary of GPC.

“The Goonanga is a Pantocarene designed self-righting Australian-built pilot vessel that will deliver a higher level of safety for our pilots and ease of operation whilst improving efficiencies,” he said.

“This state-of-the-art pilot vessel is leading the fleet for pilot launches in Queensland. We are grateful to have Goonanga join Takoko as an additional modern vessel assisting us in servicing port operations. “Honouring shipping tradition we have blessed the vessel to ensure the safety and prosperity of the vessel and its crew on board.”