OCEAN-GOING FERRY WON’T BE IN SERVICE UNTIL MAY 18
The Alaska ferry M/V Tustumena is staying put at the Vigor Ketchikan Shipyards for now, due to extensive “steel wastage” on the car deck.
The 55-year-old ferry was in for its annual maintenance and overhaul in February, and during that servicing the rust was discovered. It is expected to return to service on May 18 on a trip from Homer to Kodiak. Originally, it would have been back in service next week.
The delay impacts communities in Southwest Alaska and along the Aleutian chain. Alaska Marine Highway System staff is contacting affected passengers.
But it has limitations. In addition to age, it can only accommodate 36 vehicles and 174 passengers. There is increasing demand for car deck capacity between Homer and Kodiak.
The timeline for replacing the Tustemena:
- Glosten Selected for Design November 2013
- Reconnaissance Report March 2014
- Environmental Documents June 2014
- Design Study Report November 2014
- Construction Manager/General Contractor Procurement January 2019
- Notice to Proceed CMGC June 2019
- Preconstruction Phase July 2019 thru June 2020
- Construction Notice to Proceed June 2020
- Vessel Construction June 2020 thru November 2022