21 Jan 2020

Cruise ships not to blame for ferry disruption - Auckland Transport

7:05 pm on 21 January 2020

Auckland Transport says cruise ships aren't to blame for the cancellation of some ferries this morning.

A Fullers ferry docked at the Auckland Ferry Terminal before leaving for Waiheke

Fullers ferry. Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

Ferry company Fullers cancelled three ferries from Auckland to Devonport, citing the arrival of two cruise ships.

"We have seen cruise ships berthing at times outside of their schedule, which is hard to plan for," it said in a statement.

But an Auckland Transport spokesperson said Fullers made its own decision and the cruise ships did not cause this morning's disruption.

The spokesperson said Harbourmaster Andrew Hayton found the cruise ships' effect on other vessels this morning to be negligible.

"There are no restrictions on ferries entering or leaving the ferry basin at any time. Ultimately the decision to enter or leave the ferry basin is the call of the master of a vessel."

National MP for Auckland Central, Nikki Kaye, said she was disappointed in the delays and Fullers needed to explain what happened.

"I will be asking Fullers, Auckland Transport, the Harbourmaster, Ports of Auckland, cruise ship operators and local representatives to meet and clarify what has occurred and the ongoing arrangements."

She added the government needed to improve service guarantees for Fullers to avoid further delays.