Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Superferry cancels today's Kauai trip

Superferry cancels today's Kauai trip

Advertiser Staff

The Hawaii Superferry canceled its planned 3 p.m. trip to Kaua'i today, saying the U.S. Coast Guard could not guarantee the safe passage of the boat into Nawiliwili Harbor on Kauai.

Yesterday, a flotilla of protesters at the mouth of Nawiliwili Harbor prevented the Supeferry from making a scheduled stop and it returned to O'ahu.

The Superferry said in a statement todday: "At 1:00 p.m., the U.S. Coast Guard informed Hawaii Superferry that, contrary to previous assurances, it can no longer guarantee a safe passage for the Alakai and its passengers into and out of Nawiliwili Harbor on Kaua'i. Hawaii Superferry will suspend service until the U.S. Coast Guard notifies management it is safe to use the harbor facilities at Nawiliwili."

Gov. Linda Lingle said today she had asked the Superferry not to attempt another trip to Kauai today.

"I'm concerned about the safety of people," Lingle told reporters after speaking this afternoon at a tourism conference at the Hawaii Convention Center. "We have reason to believe they would be in the water again trying to stop a huge vessel on a surfboard, and that's a recipe for a serious problem.

"So we're asking Superferry, don't go in, let's make certain that the public safety is protected."

Superferry officials have scheduled a news conference at 3 p.m. today to discuss the situation in Kauai.