MCA inspectors found 30 issues with Kilcreggan ferry

Inspectors who detailed the Kilcreggan to Gourock ferry last month found 30 separate defects, it has been revealed.

The Island Princess could not sail for seven days after Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) inspectors found ‘several serious defects’, forcing commuters to make a 50-mile journey by road rather than the 13-minute trip across the Clyde.

Now a Freedom of Information Request has shown the full extent of the problems uncovered by MCA inspectors.

They range from issues with lifejackets, a fire pump and fire extinguishers to a crew member with inadequate spoken English and no evidence of basic safety training.

A PDF copy of the inspection report is here: Island Princess – Freedom of Information Request – ID 2942

This is the second time that the vessel has been found to have multiple problems soon after a contract with operator Clydelink was awarded by Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT).

Five years ago the MCA found 14 faults which had to be rectified before it could sail again.

Cllr Graham Hardie, Argyll and Bute Council’s new representative on SPT, said today he had attended a meeting yesterday concerning the ferry service with Lomond North councillor Barbara Morgan, Inverclyde councillor David Wilson, Cove and Kilcreggan Community Council chairman Nick Davies and Alex Scott, SPT’s services manager.

Graham Hardie: ‘SPT doing their utmost’.

“We discussed the service and its reliability and ability to serve the community going forward,” he said.

“Overall I am satisfied that SPT are doing their utmost to ensure the service continues with us little disruption as possible to the public going forward.”

He said Mr Scott has taken measures to help improve the service and ‘fully understands the impact when the service is not available’.

These measures include spot checks without notice by a marine consultant – a measure which was promised two years ago by SPT – and regular meetings to maintain service expectations are regularly met.

He added that any fees owed by Clydelink would be deducted by SPT prior to payment of services.

1 Comment

  1. I am glad that Julian has received a response to his FIO request which, in my view, highlights just how dangerous this service appears to have been. I find it hard to believe that all these faults only cropped up prior to the recent inspection. The question is, how long had the ferry been running in this condition? I have also submitted at FOI request to the MCGA and await the information I requested. The service provide by SPT via Clydelink continues to be totally unacceptable. My constituents living on the Rosneath Peninsula deserve much better. We continue to hear promises, promises. It is time that SPT and the Scottish Government got this mess sorted out. Councillor George Freeman.

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