Hundreds of people were stranded on Vancouver Island Sunday night after a mechanical failure on a BC Ferries vessel.
It happened on the Coast Renaissance vessel during the 8: 15 p.m. sailing between Nanaimo and Tsawwassen.
” A few minutes into the sailing the mechanical failure occurred, it was, we believe, due to an electrical issue. As a result the vessel had to drop the anchors,” said Astrid Chang of BC Ferries.
One guest onboard informed CTV News the ship briefly lost power.
And it was very warm inside since they didn’t have air conditioning anymore,” said Melissa Landa.
Landa and 3 others had actually invested the weekend outdoor camping in Tofino. By the time the ship docked and they had actually gotten their refunds from ferryboat staff, it was around 3 a.m. The group all needed to work Monday early morning in Vancouver so they drove into the line-up for the first cruising back and oversleeped the car.
” 4 individuals in a Nissan Versa– it was very small and we went outdoor camping, so it had plenty of things so we needed to sleep there,” Landa said.
Other travelers, like Carlo Fortin, rushed to discover hotels.
” Absolutely worn out,” Fortin said, soon after checking out a space in Nanaimo.
Fortin was travelling back to Vancouver with 3 of his family and friends.
” We had to call in ill and fill positions for today’s work,” he stated.
BC Ferries says it used guests free food during the wait, but both Fortin and Landa stated they were just used complimentary drinks.
Households with young kids and family pets took to social media to share their frustration.
They were stranded on the water for 4 hours.
” Sometimes when occurrences happen, we need to engage with a number of various companies. In this case, we had to co-ordinate with a pull service therefore we had to represent a few of that time co-ordinating with them, dealing with a few of the repair work, and a few of the troubleshooting that had to occur,” stated Astrid Chang of BC Ferries.
Some tried to catch some shuteye on the upper decks, laying out sleeping bags.
Several pull boats showed up hours later and pulled the ferry back to Duke Point.
As soon as docked, travelers reported waiting as much as an hour in line to get their refunds.
” We needed to re-reserve for tomorrow’s cruising so we might for sure get back,” stated Fortin.
He states they had to pay a premium for the appointment due to the brief notification.
” A few of the personnel interaction was not what we needed to hear. The captain stating, ‘It is what it is,’ over the intercom, which resembled, ‘Yeah, thanks for absolutely nothing, boss,'” Fortin told CTV News.
He states he’s out at least $200 for his hotel space and meals alone.
” A little empathy goes a long way. Possibly they could have used food vouchers or something like that.”
Fortin says he’s disappointed in how personnel managed the situation.
” Even on land they were not really helpful, not really good. Understand. You have 570 passengers on a boat, you’re going to have 570 upset passengers.”
BC Ferries says is excusing the hold-ups.
” These situations are never simple not only for our team, but likewise our guests and I just want to thank our consumers for their understanding and their persistence. This is a real hassle for everybody at night and we understand this interfered with a lot of their itinerary,” stated Chang.
Chang says the repairs were done overnight and it does not anticipate any extra disruptions to cruisings.
Anybody who incurred out of pocket expenditures due to the disruption is asked to call BC Ferries customer support line: 1-888-223-3779