Weekend travel between Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland will once again be impacted by BC Ferries’ ongoing labour issues.
Friday and Sunday sailings on the Queen of New Westminster vessel have been cancelled due to staffing shortages.
Friday’s 4 p.m. Tsawwassen and 6 p.m. Swartz Bay departures are among the cancellations. Four Sunday sailings have also been scrapped. They include the 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. out of Tsawwassen and the 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. ferries leaving Swartz Bay.
The cancellations are due to BC Ferries needing a specific number of crew members on board to ensure passenger safety in the event of an emergency and to comply with Transport Canada regulations, according to a Friday service notice.
Those impacted by the cancellations will be contacted and notified if there’s space available to fit them on an alternate sailing later in the day, or if their booking must be cancelled. Those axed trips will be refunded.
BC Ferries said cancellations are made after it’s exhausted all options to find a replacement crew and customers will be notified if such a crew becomes available.
The ferry provider advises travellers to use the Tsawwassen/ Duke Point and Horseshoe Bay/ Departure Bay routes as an alternative.
The staffing shortages have also prompted baggage services on the Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen route to be suspended until further notice, effective 7 a.m. on Friday.
Other sailings between Metro Vancouver and the Sunshine Coast were reinstated Friday as those previous staffing issues have been resolved.
Those Queen of Surrey sailings running again as of June 10 include the 8:40 a.m. and 11 a.m. departing Langdale and the 9:50 a.m. and 12:10 p.m. leaving Horseshoe Bay.
Up-to-date sailing information can be found at @BC Ferries on Twitter, at at www.bcferries.com or at 1-888-223-3779.
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