After the U.S. Coast Guard halted service on nearly two dozen New York Waterway ferries for safety issues over the weekend, commuters on Monday faced extensive delays and modified routes. On Sunday, the Coast Guard said it suspended 23 of 32 ferries operated by the company after multiple inspections found them to be “operationally unfit.” As of Monday afternoon, 15 ferries remained out of service.
New York Waterway ferries take about 32,000 riders daily between various locations in New Jersey and four piers in Manhattan. According to the New York Times, the line for the 9 a.m. ferry to Midtown from the Port Imperial terminal in Weehawken filled the platform, as ferries were operating every 20 minutes instead of 10 minutes.
“It feels like I got up particularly early to make an earlier boat and that’s all going down the tubes,” Ken Boyar, a commuter waiting in line on Monday, told the Times. “I’ve never this particular line this bad.”
Problems found during random inspections over the last two weeks made the Coast Guard reinspect all 32 of the company’s ferries. According to News 12 New Jersey, most of the issues involved fire and emergency system, but specifics are not yet known.
“The safety of the public is our top priority, and we expect our ferry operators to uphold the highest standards,” Capt. Jason Tama, the commander of Coast Guard Sector New York, said in a statement.
“We know many people rely on these ferries for daily commutes, and as these discrepancies are rectified, we will work with New York Waterway to return these ferries to operations as quickly as possible.”
To temporarily replace the ferries taken out of service, Waterway spokesperson Pat Smith said the company is using four boats, including New York Water Taxis.
[Via NY Times]
- Emergency ferry route between N.J. and Midtown will become permanent this fall
- To avoid the PATH, will Hoboken commuters pay for pricey ferry service?
- City is heavily-subsidizing ferry rides for white, wealthy New Yorkers