The Shields Ferry has had a new engine fitted on one of its two vessels.
Nexus, the public body which owns and operates the cross-Tyne service, bought the refurbished power unit from a supplier in Norway.
The Spirit of the Tyne has got the new diesel motor as part of a £400,000 investment programme.
This allows one of the Spirit’s current engines to be taken away for an overhaul without having to take the boat out of service for a lengthy period.
It was shipped to the UK and installed at the South Shields ferry landing.
Shields Ferry Manager, Carol Timlin, said: “I’m pleased to say that we have successfully replaced one of the engines on our vessel Spirit of the Tyne.
“This means that we can get the existing engines overhauled without taking the boat out of service for a long period. It’s great news. Our fitters did an excellent job getting this all done in just two days.”
Ferry Fitter, Mark Eccles, said: “The process involved disconnecting the old engine and lifting it out, and then lowering the new one into the Spirit’s engine bay and reconnecting it all up.
“One of the problems we’ve had in the past is that we didn’t have a spare motor. This new one allows us to carry out maintenance without taking the boat out of service for a month.
“It also means that in the event of an engine failure we now have a spare that can be put straight in.
“This type of engine is no longer manufactured, so this also gives us a good supply of components, guaranteeing the future of the vessel for a long time to come.
“We knew that models of this type of engines don’t grow on trees so we scoured Europe and we managed to find one over in Norway. It was originally a generator on a tugboat and it has been converter for us. It’s a really good outcome.”