Extra crew to tackle Dartmouth Lower Ferry disruption
ONE of Dartmouth’s two tug-operated Lower Ferries, the Tom Avis, will go in for its annual refit on Thursday November 2.
In order to help speed up the operation of the remaining ferry, which is run by South Hams District Council, extra staff will be on board to increase the speed of operation.
Ferry manager Pat Webb said: “We try to keep the disruption of single ferry operation to a minimum.
"With an extra crew man on board it means the tug operator does not have to leave his wheelhouse to collect the fares on the slipway as he would do normally.
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"He is able to concentrate on just piloting the tug and it can shave five minutes off each journey which means a lot to our regular commuters queuing in winter.”
The refitted ferry will return to service in time for the Higher Ferry refit in December. The two Lower Ferries will remain in operation during that period.
The three tugs Hauley IV, V and VI, which suffer high wear and tear in hauling the ferries, are taken out of service on a rolling basis throughout the year and overhauled.
Councillor Bill Hitchins, South Hams Executive member for Assets said: “This refit is to ensure the ferry regains its MCA Passenger Certificate which is the ferry equivalent of your car’s MoT certificate.
"It is vital to the safe operation of the ferry and we hope our regular passengers will bear with us during this period.”