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Smooth return for Spirit

Tuesday, April 17, 2018
Passengers leave the Port-of-Spain Ferry Terminal after disembarking the T&T Spirit after it arrived from Tobago yesterday. PICTURE ABRAHAM DIAZ

Passengers who travelled on board the T&T Spirit yesterday praised its return to the seabridge after they arrived on board at the Port in Port-of-Spain, following what was a smooth return run.

The seabridge collapsed last month after the Port Authority of T&T was forced to take the T&T Express from the inter-island service on March 13 for an overdue dry-docking. The T&T Spirit had already been out of service for dry docking since June 6 last year, then experienced a series of issues with sea trials before finally getting the go-ahead to return to the route on Saturday.

Caribbean Airlines and cargo ferry the Cabo Star tried to pick up the slack, but there were still severe travel woes for passengers, especially during the recent Easter vacation.

In the interim, one of the other vessels used to try to alleviate the problem, the Trini Flash water taxi, stalled off Blanchisseuse after a fire on board while on the journey to Tobago on March 27. Some 63 passengers were on board the Trini Flash and the Cabo Star had to alter its journey to rescue them.

In a media release yesterday, T&T Inter-Island Transportation Company CEO Vilma Lewis-Cockburn said the T&T Spirit left the Port of Scarborough at 6.38 am with 308 passengers and 62 vehicles and arrived at 9.25 am in Port-of-Spain. In an interview at the PoS port after the vessel arrived, Appolonia Weekes, a Cocorite resident, said the service was very good.

“Let them try to get the boat in order. It was very good this morning,” she said.

Antonia Holder, a Morvant mother of two, said it was easy sailing yesterday morning.

“We boarded at five past six and waited until 6.30. It was nice, it was easy. We took the plane on Thursday but we took the boat to come back,” she said.

Holder said they decided to take the boat because her four-year-old son, Kymania, began to cry when they experienced some turbulence during the flight to Tobago.

“He didn’t like the plane when it dip and began to cry,” she said.

Her daughter, Starr Reid, said he liked travelling on the boat and didn’t have any problems.

Another passenger who refused to give her name said the boat was on time, it was clean and they didn’t have any problems getting tickets.


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