SEATTLE (AP) — Puget Sound ferry service should be back on schedule by Saturday after disruptions caused by maintenance and unexpected repairs, the interim head of Washington State Ferries said Thursday.
The problems have left riders grumbling about long waits and cancellations during the peak summer tourism and travel season.
Two vessels required unplanned work at the same time two other ferries were out for scheduled maintenance, Capt. George Capacci said.
"It's an unprecedented situation we find ourselves in," Capacci told reporters in a conference call.
He apologized to riders and said the ferry system is fragile and vulnerable to disruptions due to an aging fleet and deferred maintenance.
Service has been troubled since Tuesday, when the ferry Tacoma lost power on the busy Seattle-Bainbridge Island route and a ferry was shifted from the Edmonds-Kingston route, causing delays for those riders.
No estimate was available for the return of the Tacoma, which has an electrical problem, Capacci said.
Service should return to normal this weekend with the return of the Wenatchee, which has been in dry dock in Vancouver, British Columbia, to repair a leak.
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