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August 8, 2014 at 2:51 PM

State ferry Tacoma will need prolonged repairs

Ten days after the M/V Tacoma stalled off Bainbridge Island, ferry managers haven’t yet received a detailed plan to fix its electrical problems.

“The damage is a little more extensive than we thought,” said Capt. George Capacci, interim director of Washington State Ferries. Specialists from Siemens Global, which made the damaged components, are still inspecting the boat and may produce a repair plan within two weeks, Capacci said in a phone interview Friday. Initially, he predicted a repair plan would be ready sometime this week.

“The Tacoma’s going to be out of service a little longer than hoped,” he said.  There also will be a board of inquiry to look at “root causes” of the power loss on July 29, he said.

In addition, a debriefing is planned next week to look at why the ferry Walla Walla carried only 600 passengers on the Seattle-Bainbridge run, instead of the allowable 1,200 passengers, in the hours following the Tacoma’s breakdown. The shortfall made delays worse for passengers, who waited up to three hours in line at the Seattle dock. Capacci has blamed a communication problem, but said Friday he doesn’t have further details.

The ferry Wenatchee is back in service after repairs in British Columbia, so there no longer are missed sailings due to a vessel shortage.

Comments | More in Traffic & Transit | Topics: Capt. George Capacci, Tacoma, Washington State Ferries

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