Repaired B.C. ferry returns to service in Gulf Islands
The Queen of Nanaimo was damaged when it was blown off course in a storm on Nov. 2
Two weeks after it was knocked out of service, the BC Ferries vessel Queen of Nanaimo is returning to its regular route servicing the Southern Gulf Islands this afternoon.
The repairs on the vessel were finished on Thursday and it was sent out for sea trials. It will resume service on Friday with the 4:25 p.m. PT sailing from Long Harbour on Saltspring Island to Vancouver.
The first departure from Vancouver is 6:30 p.m. PT Friday.
The ship's propeller and hull were damaged when a gust of wind blew it off course near the Mayne Island ferry terminal during a storm on Nov. 2.
That forced the crew to drop anchor in an attempt to stop the vessel from drifting further off course, and it swung around on the anchor chain and hit a nearby private dock.
The crash meant many Gulf Islanders had to make do without direct service to Vancouver, because there were no vessels available to be brought in as a replacement.
Instead travellers from Vancouver had to take a six-hour detour to Swartz Bay north of Victoria to access service on smaller vessels.
Meanwhile the B.C. government says it will reveal upcoming changes to coastal ferry service at a news conference on Monday morning.