Crew member's absence grounds ferry
Monday, March 24, 2008
VANCOUVER - The absence of one crew member forced the cancellation of two sailings between Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland today.
Deborah Marshall, BC Ferries director of media relations, said the 5:15 a.m sailing of the Queen of Cowichan from Duke Point in Nanaimo to Tsawwassen was prevented when there were insufficient staff to operate the vessel under Transport Canada safety regulations.
"We needed to have a crew of 21 on board but we only had 20. We can't sail unless we have a full complement," said Marshall.
Vehicles that had been loaded onto the Queen of Cowichan at Duke Point for the early morning sailing were then unloaded, with travellers having to wait until the Queen of Alberni sailed at 7:45 a.m. Marshall said there were some disgruntled passengers.
"It was frustrating for them to have to wait another two and a half hours before leaving," she said.
The failure of the Queen of Cowichan to arrive in Tsawwassen resulted in the 7:45 a.m. sailing from Tsawwassen to Duke Point being cancelled. Marshall couldn't say which member of the crew failed to arrive.
"It doesn't have to be an officer it could be someone who works in catering," she said.
Asked if there would be disciplinary action taken against the crew member for failing to show up, Marshall said that was an internal matter that would not be discussed publicly.