Wood Islands ferry terminal

We’re committed to keeping our readers informed

We’ve removed our paywall so all can enjoy PEI’s best local content during the coronavirus crisis. Please consider supporting the vital role of local journalism in our community and province. Subscribe now

The Eastern PEI Chamber of Commerce is urging public health officials and Northumberland Ferries to consider the potential of immediately opening the ferry service to commercial and first responder use only.

“We fully understand the public safety issue. However, the ferry plays a vital role in the Island economy at this time of year and we believe a limited service can be safely offered with minimal extra effort,” says Chamber President Russ Compton.

Northumberland Ferries has delayed its traditional May 1st opening to June 1st. The ferry operator’s federal subsidy is calendar based, meaning it would not lose money by opening on a limited basis to commercial truck traffic associated with industries including agriculture, forestry and construction, says Mr Compton.

The chamber points to the CMTA ferry service connecting Souris to the Magdalen Islands that continues to operate weekly crossings but is limited to commercial traffic and essential services.

“This is a common sense solution, while appreciating the importance of the service to the community and economy. In our opinion, Northumberland Ferries is no different,” the president said. “Essential drivers are in short supply and stressed beyond the limit during this pandemic. For drivers transporting essential goods originating or bound to eastern PEI, a rest on the ferry and a few hours less driving would provide a much needed rest and increased highway safety.”

The chamber is urging federal and provincial politicians in both Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, as well as fellow Chambers of Commerce in both provinces, to support the effort.

“We are not promoting anything that would be seen as counter to public health and safety. We are promoting the limited, safe operation of an essential service to the PEI economy, especially at this time of year.”

Recommended for you

(1) comment

Maryluna

Why the rush? I actually think our waterway is having a moment to breathe and cleanse too! The marine life and water have not had a break for so long. The ferry’s will start up in just over a month . We can all survive till then.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.