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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2015 8:56 am 
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Email to HKKF, Marine Dept., Transport Dept., Lamma.com.hk,

"Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing to complain of the negligent seamanship witnessed aboard the 8pm HK & Kowloon ferry heading to Yung Shue Wan, Lamma Island on Wednesday, 11th February.

As the captain pulled away from the side of the pier, passengers heard loud crunching, cracking sounds and felt the ferry jolt and shudder: the ferryman operating the door had somehow not had sufficient time to bring up the gangway from its lowered position so it was badly damaged. In fact, the door could not be shut fully and sat ajar and bent out of shape.

No reassurances or explanations were provided to passengers at any time. Furthermore, instead of putting passengers on another ferry, the door was simply pulled up as far as it would go and tied fast with rope to the interior of the vessel - with the door still partly open and bent out of shape. The captain promptly continued with the journey to the Yung Shue Wan Lamma Island ferry pier as if nothing had happened.

Surely this is unacceptable? Having experienced previous negligences from this ferry company over our many years as passengers - culminating with substantial loss of life in the recent National Day ferry disaster, many of us are understandably nervous about our safety on HKKF vessels.

I attach photos I took of the damaged gangway. Please advise of action to be taken against HKKF company to ensure passenger safety in such circumstances in the future.

I look forward to receiving an initial reply outlining more effective safety controls by mid-March at the latest.

Yours faithfully,

Louise Eastwell
- Lamma resident of 20 years"


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:19 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:07 am
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Nice one, I wrote an almost identical letter to 1823 (and CCd the police too, since in my experience the Marine Department and HKKF are quite cosy at avoiding trouble). The police are asking for more info, I will alert them to this letter too. As Louise points out, this was appalling seamanship, the skipper didn't even come down to check what structural damage may have occurred.
It's a shame that so far the Sea Smooth Skipper is the fall guy for the Lamma IV accident, while HKKF appears to be carrying on its sloppy low-budget operation with not a whiff of safety culture. Making a cheesy and annoying video about lifejackets was NOT the answer, that company needs a complete overhaul of its culture.
Anyway cheers Louise, glad I wasn't the only one complaining!

Lamma-Gung wrote:
Email to HKKF, Marine Dept., Transport Dept., Lamma.com.hk,

"Dear Sir or Madam,

I am writing to complain of the negligent seamanship witnessed aboard the 8pm HK & Kowloon ferry heading to Yung Shue Wan, Lamma Island on Wednesday, 11th February.

As the captain pulled away from the side of the pier, passengers heard loud crunching, cracking sounds and felt the ferry jolt and shudder: the ferryman operating the door had somehow not had sufficient time to bring up the gangway from its lowered position so it was badly damaged. In fact, the door could not be shut fully and sat ajar and bent out of shape.

No reassurances or explanations were provided to passengers at any time. Furthermore, instead of putting passengers on another ferry, the door was simply pulled up as far as it would go and tied fast with rope to the interior of the vessel - with the door still partly open and bent out of shape. The captain promptly continued with the journey to the Yung Shue Wan Lamma Island ferry pier as if nothing had happened.

Surely this is unacceptable? Having experienced previous negligences from this ferry company over our many years as passengers - culminating with substantial loss of life in the recent National Day ferry disaster, many of us are understandably nervous about our safety on HKKF vessels.

I attach photos I took of the damaged gangway. Please advise of action to be taken against HKKF company to ensure passenger safety in such circumstances in the future.

I look forward to receiving an initial reply outlining more effective safety controls by mid-March at the latest.

Yours faithfully,

Louise Eastwell
- Lamma resident of 20 years"


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:43 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 09, 2007 5:15 pm
Posts: 23
I was aboard that ferry and had no safety concerns about the damage. I was glad that the captain made no fuss and proceeded to deliver us safely home without delay. The gangplank was torn from its hinges but this superficial damage did not affect the seaworthiness of the boat. The reaction of the letter writers seems slightly hysterical and unnecessary to me, in this case.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2015 3:33 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2002 7:06 pm
Posts: 5045
Location: Tai Peng
Quote:
instead of putting passengers on another ferry, the door was simply pulled up as far as it would go and tied fast with rope


It isn't a watertight door, it's well above the water line; as long as no one was in danger of falling out of it it isn't a safety factor.
Sailors do know how to tie knots.


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