Washington State Ferries Archives - Salish Current

Struggling state ferry system finds its way in Washington governor’s race

April 16, 2024
Jerry Cornfield, Washington State Standard

Democrat Bob Ferguson backs building diesel ferries if it gets new boats sooner. Republican Dave Reichert pokes him for pilfering an idea GOP lawmakers proposed months ago.

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Legislators throw a life ring to Washington’s ‘other’ ferries

February 21, 2024
Tom Banse
Increased state aid for Guemes Island ferry replacement and a new Kitsap hydrofoil ferry comes with a catch: voters must reject climate act repeal initiative.
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Is passenger-ferry service for the islands possible?

February 7, 2024
Toby Cooper

In San Juan County, years of service interruptions, cancellations and mechanical breakdowns have taught ferry-weary islanders to mistrust the WSF system upon which so many depend. Now, the possibility of passenger-only boats for interisland routes may spark reasons to cheer.

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Washington State Ferries problem is a management problem

December 6, 2023
Alex MacLeod

Commentary: On the San Juan Islands/Anacortes route, one day it’s an old boat with mechanical problems. One day it is the lack of necessary crew. Some days it is both.

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Strangled by ferry crisis, islanders demand action

November 20, 2023
Nancy DeVaux

San Juan County, Town of Friday Harbor and Vashon Island identify impacts of disruptions and possible solutions to alleviate ferry service ills.

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WTF? WSF meets community’s ire after Memorial Day weekend debacle in San Juans

June 2, 2023
Nancy DeVaux

Questions on crew shortage, breakdowns, overnight wait, emergency services, fare increases, Sidney run resumption — and more — aired at meeting on ferries.

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Where’s the ferry?

February 24, 2023
Nancy DeVaux

Islanders will see more crew, upgraded terminal … before new ferries.

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Local legislators set housing, public safety, education and climate as priority

January 5, 2023
Editorial Staff

All-Democrat delegation identifies top issues they will pursue when the legislative session begins on Jan. 9.

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Sitting silently does nothing for island ferry service

September 15, 2022
Alex MacLeod

Commentary: Inaction on ferry service issues guarantees that what we know is bad will almost inevitably get worse.

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San Juans adopt island-by-island vacation rental cap

May 18, 2022
Nancy DeVaux

How much tourism is too much? San Juan County sets a cap on vacation rental permits.

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Ferry delays are beyond inconvenience, islanders stress at community meeting

January 14, 2022
Heather Spaulding

Islanders gave Washington State Ferries staff an earful at a community meeting about how disruptions on the San Juan-Anacortes ferry route hamper access to healthcare, education, jobs, supplies and families. With COVID-19, freezing weather and crew shortages, ferry riders have endured a chaotic year and want to know what the state will do to improve the situation.

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‘Where’s the ferry?’ islanders ask as crew shortages stymie scheduled sailings

October 12, 2021
Heather Spaulding

In San Juan County, where ferry service is an integral part of the state highway system, recent cancellations of ferry sailings related to crew shortages have resulted in some residents unable to get home, to work or to doctor appointments, and have delayed arrival of groceries and other vital supplies.

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No new reservations, for now: Living and working around ferry delays, cancellations in the San Juans

September 2, 2021
Heather Spaulding

This year’s peak-season summer Washington State Ferries sailing schedule has been plagued by delayed and canceled sailings, some due to a shortage of crew and some to mechanical problems. For the long Labor Day weekend, things are not looking much brighter for the San Juan Islands runs.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

‘A very complex issue’: Ramel gives update on San Juan Islands ferry delays

August 5, 2020
Mike Sato

The state-run ferry system linking Salish Sea communities has remained on a three-vessel winter schedule due to lower travel volume. As vehicle traffic has increased over the summer and loading and unloading times have taken longer, the result has been hour-long delays by the afternoon and evening.

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photo: Amy Nelson © 2020

Virus versus visitors: San Juan residents weigh health risks of tourism amid pandemic

March 26, 2020
Hayley Day

In the San Juan Islands, locals bank on a bustling tourism economy to generate business and provide wages, particularly during the sunny summer months. But with a growing pandemic, islanders, like others in small vacation destinations, are realizing fewer visitors might mean healthier locals.

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