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Kay Bee: your description of pontoons seems …

Comment posted MCA serves Argyll Ferries with improvement notice by Robert Wakeham.

Kay Bee: your description of pontoons seems to be of the flimsy lightweight flexible type for small boats & yachts in sheltered harbours, rather than the traditional heavyweight pontoon landing stage structures that are customary for passenger ferry use – ignorance or just massaging the facts to fit your own prejudices?

Robert Wakeham also commented

  • Calling yourself ‘ferryman’ suggests that this is probably your main interest, so I’m surprised you don’t care about the set-up at Gourock – or are you ‘car driver’ more than ‘ferryman’, and passengers can go take a running jump?
  • Ferryman, how would you propose a ‘service that works’ could adequately provide for easy transfer of foot passengers, including elderly and disabled, between ferry and train at Gourock?
  • That’s at Dunoon; and at the other end?
  • I would have thought that it was obvious to most people that linkspans are designed to expedite vehicle traffic whereas pontoons are designed to make life easy for people. It was because MacBrayne’s Islay service hadn’t upgraded to vehicle ramps that Western Ferries was set up in the first place, and here we are goodness knows how many years later with a similar lack of decent facilities, this time for passengers, on the Gourock – Dunoon route – and, for that matter, on the Gourock Kilcreggan route.
  • I think you’re creating a problem – I think ferry pontoons are designed to cope with the size of boats and the degree of exposure. Pontoons don’t behave like boats.

Recent comments by Robert Wakeham

  • With Heb Isles in for repairs, CalMac charters replacement vessel to reduce underprovision for Islay
    Scott Smith – you give the impression that you have advance knowledge of future vessel deployments, but you get your dates, boats and places jumbled up. Any chance you could clarify these, please?
  • With Heb Isles in for repairs, CalMac charters replacement vessel to reduce underprovision for Islay
    A movable mezzanine deck that can’t be repaired unless the ship is dry docked?
    Sounds a bit like a car that needs dismantling before the oil can be changed. I wonder if someone specified some really exotic features on that mezzanine deck that no commercial ship owner in their right mind would dream up in their worst nightmare – but which the ship builder was only too happy to install, if the price was right?
  • With Heb Isles in for repairs, CalMac charters replacement vessel to reduce underprovision for Islay
    The comments on this particular thread (at least, those that are relevant and not just trying to make everything political) can be read as reflecting wider concerns, and it’s now being reported in the newspapers that the seriously inadequate response of Calmac when the Hebridean Isles had to be withdrawn from service for repairs in the middle of the summer tourist season is going to be reviewed at a meeting in Islay in October, reportedly to be hosted by our MSP, to hold Calmac, Transport Scotland and the Government to account.
    Hopefully they’ll have the sense to leave the bullshit on the mainland.
  • With Heb Isles in for repairs, CalMac charters replacement vessel to reduce underprovision for Islay
    The BBC Scottish News website today has a lengthy item about Calmac’s trials and tribulations with the good ship Isle of Arran.
    However, it’s really only padding out the previously known facts as deemed suitable for release by Calmac, and leaves the details of the boat’s problems unexplained. It’s basically a case of ‘bear with us, there’ll be jam tomorrow’.
    Someone needs to spell out to the Calmac management – and our Holyrood politicians – that if you drive an old banger that wouldn’t pass its MOT and gave the police some feeble excuse about not being able to find spare parts you’d wind up in court.
    The BBC could at least have asked Calmac to explain what sort of problems were making the boat more susceptible to weather cancellations – and as to the Finlaggan running about with a broken mezzanine deck and the Heb Isles crashing into Kennacraig pier, maybe the BBC consider these matters to be unworthy of reporting, let alone investigation.
  • With Heb Isles in for repairs, CalMac charters replacement vessel to reduce underprovision for Islay
    Quoting me out of context, NCH – but it’s nice to know that you read my despicable comments in the Herald, as well as enthusiastically scrutinising this, your favourite despicable blog. Chin up, don’t let your enemies get you down.

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