LETTERS From J. Owlett, Kent:
YOU carried a story (CP, 14-09-12) about the new restrictions being imposed on Wightlink regarding passengers having to vacate the car deck.
I have spoken with Wightlink as I have a very old Scottish deerhound that cannot manage the stairs and who finds it very difficult to stand on the slippery floor of the lift. Wightlink customer services reply was they cannot help.
Apparently, prison vans and ambulances are exempt but people with nervous animals, eg horses, dogs, etc must leave the car deck — and this includes all disabled people.
The article said guidance from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency had caused the changes in rules. To me this is a sledge hammer to cover a most unlikely event.
Would you please publish a much larger article and see if public pressure can ease the rules — perhaps if the traveller gave a written undertaking of no responsibility falling on Wightlink, this would cover the problem.
I have spoken to the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, in Southampton, and while sympathetic, they said it would be referred to a superintendent and he would telephone — after three days waiting no further reply has been forthcoming.
I would like to hear views from other readers.