UPDATED: The Cowes Floating Bridge has been suspended for the second day running – but this time it’s a mechanical issue that has stopped the River Medina service.
At around 12:40 the troubled chain ferry vessel was pulled up at East Cowes, bringing the service to a temporary end during one of the busiest weeks of the entire year – Cowes Week.
The Isle of Wight Council have confirmed that a mechanical issue is to blame for the suspension, unlike yesterday’s suspension which was due to the vessel running aground.
Island Echo understands there is an issue with the prow of Floating Bridge No. 6.
A foot passenger launch is in place but delays are expected.
More information will be provided in due course, according to a Council spokesperson. However, it’s unknown when the service will resume.
UPDATE @ 17:00 – ‘Special arrangements’ have been taken to ensure Cowes Floating Bridge runs its usual service for Cowes firework night tomorrow (Friday).
The launch will continue to operate from 5am on Friday but the floating bridge will return to service for foot passengers from 18:00 until 03:00, as usual for Cowes Week firework night.
Council leader, Councillor Dave Stewart, said:
“This issue was totally unexpected but officers have worked quickly to address the situation.
“Working alongside the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and Cowes harbourmaster, everyone has made every effort to ensure the vessel is operational for firework night.
“We run the service for foot passengers from 6pm, as we do every year during Cowes firework night.
“We have contacted the Mainstay, who built the floating bridge, and they will be investigating the problem with the aim of making a full repair as soon as possible.”
Revised timetable as follows:
Now until 23:00 – foot passenger launch in place
Foot passenger launch from 5am until 6pm, replaced by the floating bridge for foot passengers only until 03:00, as usual for Cowes Week.
Saturday and Sunday – TBC
Any further updates on the floating bridge service will be placed on the council’s website and social media platforms.