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Sunday, January 24, 2021

Gujarat: RoPax ferry services resume day after electrical fault stalled vessel mid-sea

On Tuesday, the RoPax ferry had left Hazira port in Surat for Ghogha in Bhavnagar. Besides 100 passengers, it was loaded with trucks, cars, and bikes. Around 10 am, sources said, a fault occurred in the steering of the vessel.

By: Express News Service | Surat | January 6, 2021 10:25:39 pm
Ahmedabad: Shipping ministry to form empowered group to restart Ro-Ro ferry serviceThe ferry was meant to provide an easier option to those travelling between Bhavnagar and Surat for livelihood. (File Photo)

The Hazira-Ghogha RoPax ferry services resumed on Wednesday after an electrical fault stranded the vessel for several hours mid-sea a day ago with nearly 100 Ghogha-bound passengers. A tug from Hazira later assisted the vessel to Ghogha, where it reached later in the evening sailing at a speed of 3 to 4 nautical miles, officials said.

On Tuesday, the RoPax ferry had left Hazira port in Surat at 8 am for Ghogha in Bhavnagar. Besides 100 passengers, the vessel was loaded with trucks, cars, and bikes. Around 10 am, sources said, a fault occurred in the steering of the vessel, as a result of which the vessel was stranded mid-sea. Vessel staffers contacted their counterparts in Hazira and experts tried to fix the problem. Later, a tug was sent from Hazira to the vessel for assistance.

Sources said after five hours of remaining stranded in the middle of the sea, the vessel continued its voyage to Ghogha at a slower speed of 3 nautical miles to 4 nautical miles. The vessel was likely to reach its destination nearly at 2 pm but reached several hours late in the evening. The authorities reimbursed the ticket fares for passengers who were waiting to board the ferry at Ghogha.

Sources said later in the evening the vessel sailed back from Ghogha to Hazira port. The repairing work was done in the night, said a source in the Detox Group that runs the ferry services.

On Wednesday, the services resumed and the vessel sailed from Hazira carrying 200 passengers, trucks, and cars reached to Ghogha successfully without further glitches.

This is the second time that the services were disrupted due to a technical fault. In November last year, due to a technical fault the vessel was stranded in the mid-sea and its services were suspended for two days.

Chetan Contractor, the chairman of Detox Group, said, “There was some electrical fault in the engine in the mid-sea. The vessel later sailed at a lower speed and reached its destination. The fault had been timely repaired at Ghogha port by experts and there is nothing to worry about. Today, again around 200 passengers, trucks, and cars were loaded in the vessel, which reached its destination on time.”

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