MPP frustrated by Pelee Islander II delays

The new Pelee Islander II arrived in Pelee island, Kingsville and Leamington. June 15, 2018. (Photo courtesy of Ontario Ferries)

The MPP for Chatham-Kent-Leamington has had enough of delays for the Pelee Islander II.

Rick Nicholls blamed Transport Canada for a delay in the process to attain regulatory and safety approvals.

A release from Nicholls office read, “Transport Canada waived an opportunity to speed up the certification process earlier this fall, by declining an invitation to observe an evacuation demonstration.”

Nicholls said he has been in frequent contact with Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation.

The Pelee Islander II was supposed to go into service this year transporting people and goods back and forth from Pelee Island and the mainland, but Nicholls says it won’t be operational until 2019.

“I know how absolutely vital ferry service is to my constituents who live on Pelee Island, but unfortunately, I believe that Transport Canada failed to consider the vessel’s modern design and technological advancements,” wrote Nicholls.¬†“Unfortunately, the federal government has dropped its figurative anchor.”

Nicholls said he would continue to work with Ontario Minister of Transportation Jeff Yurek and with the ferry operator, the Owen Sound Transportation Company.