Wightlink charters vessel to provide service during restrictions

Wightlink will be offering a limited foot passenger commuter service between Lymington and Yarmouth during peak commuting hours only when temporary wind restrictions force cancellation of its scheduled car ferry service during the working week.

The service is expected to start on Friday 21 December 2018 as high winds are forecast.

Wightlink is chartering the CRC Gladiator, a 13 metre long catamaran with 12 seats, and it will travel between Yarmouth Harbour and Town Quay, Lymington.

The foot passenger service is intended to support Wightlink’s customers who commute regularly across the Solent in the morning and evening. Bookings are essential because space is limited on board the vessel.

It will only run on working days from Monday-Friday when Wightlink’s car ferry service is suspended because of temporary wind restrictions and only at peak commuter times.

The special timetable can be seen at www.wightlink.co.uk/updates

Wightlink has imposed wind restrictions on its Lymington-Yarmouth fleet after a serious engine failure on the ferry Wight Sky on Friday 14 December. It has been withdrawn from service pending investigations into the cause of the problem by Wightlink’s engineers, the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) and Volvo Penta engineers. The other ferries, Wight Light and Wight Sun are operating at reduced engine speeds during the investigation and the service will be suspended when winds gust higher than 25 knots.

Wightlink Chief Executive Keith Greenfield says: “Everyone is working extremely hard to determine the root cause of engine failures on our Lymington-Yarmouth service. We recognise that delays and cancellations on this route particularly impact regular commuters and have taken action to charter a vessel to help them. Our Fishbourne car ferry and FastCat service from Ryde Pier are also available for our customers.”