Ferry problems again hit Wightlink

By Richard Wright

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


WIGHTLINK’S passenger service was disrupted on Saturday morning when one of its new ferries broke down — again.

Engineers identified recurring fuel contamination affecting both Wight Ryder I and Wight Ryder II and drafted-in the old FastCats as replacements at the weekend.

The multi-million pound ferries only entered service the previous Tuesday and Wight Ryder II had suffered problems twice before.

Wightlink remains able to use the FastCats as back-ups during the handover to new owners in Bristol. That is expected to be complete in the spring.

A spokesman said: "This allows us the flexibility to 'bed’ the vessels into service and also for our crews to gain further experience with the new craft.

"Once the FastCats leave, Wightlink will be down to a two-boat operation — the same as we have been operating since May this year — and, should we experience any problems, then we will have the option to run a car ferry to Ryde Pier Head or charter a vessel from another company to ensure that the service remains as uninterrupted as possible."

Reporter: richardw@iwcpmail.co.uk

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