PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The Providence to Newport ferry will be out of service at least two days, after a minor crash caused damage to the ferry’s hull Saturday night.
Tom Wynne with SeaStreak, the company hired by RIDOT to run the ferry service, confirms to Eyewitness News the ferry will be out of service Sunday and Monday, and possibly even longer.
This message was posted on the Providence to Newport ferry service website over the weekend:
Please be advised, due to unforeseen circumstances all departures between Providence and Newport have been cancelled for the following days: Sunday 6/18/17, Monday 6/19/17, Tuesday 6/20/17.
Wynne says the ferry was damaged during its last trip Saturday night traveling from Narragansett to Providence. A private boat made an unforeseen, sharp turn towards the ferry, and the ferry swerved to avoid the private vessel heading right for it. As a result, the ferry hit a channel marker, a buoy, while trying to avoid the other boat.
Wynne says eighteen people were on board the ferry at this time, but no one was injured.
The ferry now needs repairs to its bow. Wynne says the damage to the ferry is above the water line, so there is no concern the boat will start taking on water. The damage is to one of the boat’s two hulls, at the point of the bow. Wynne adds that it’s an aluminum hull.
The ferry has been cleared to leave Providence Sunday and go to New York, where it will be repaired, and then brought back to Providence.
Wynne says it’s unclear how long the repairs will take, but the ferry service has been canceled for at least two days.
Patrons who had made reservations for the ferry service received calls Sunday from SeaStreak, confirming the cancellations.