OnTheWight always welcomes a Letter to the Editor to share with our readers – unsurprisingly they don’t always reflect the views of this publication. If you have something you’d like to share, get in touch and of course, your considered comments are welcome below.
This from Paul Carter. Ed
We are fairly regular travellers on the car ferries.
In January I noticed that for all of Red Funnel’s announcements about Covid measures, one simple problem persisted.
That is when the call to return to vehicles issued, there is a close concentration of people at the stairway entrances and on the stairs.
Additionally I have noticed that people use the handrail more often when descending, presumably due to the angle of the stairs.
Return to vehicles in stages
I wrote to Red Funnel to suggest that they announce the return to vehicles in two stages-bottom deck first, then middle. There could be a couple of minutes between the calls to allow disinfectant to be applied to the rails.
There is adequate time to do this as in our experience the current call is usually ten minutes or so before exit. Apart from the Covid protection benefits it would probably make the whole procedure safer and less stressful.
All I have had from them is an acknowledgement , and travelling this week I noticed the procedure is unchanged.
If they have a good reason as to why this could not be done, could they tell us? Otherwise it seems like little effort for a worthwhile benefit.
Response from Red Funnel
In response to Paul Carter’s Letter to News OnTheWight, a spokesperson for Red Funnel said,
“At Red Funnel, safety is always our top priority, and at these times even more than ever. We currently have a two-stage procedure in place for disembarking our vehicle ferries. This involves calling all passengers from B deck first, then A and AA deck.
“At times, if a vessel has very low numbers of passengers travelling, then we may not use the two-stage procedure as our ongoing safety measures are sufficient at such a low capacity.
“We did receive the passenger’s aforementioned letter and communicated our procedure back to the customer when they first wrote to us. We appreciate them taking the time to write to us and we have taken the opportunity to share the passenger’s latest observation with our team and ensure staff are implementing the two-stage procedure when required.
“Passengers should feel relaxed and ‘Sail Safe’ with us, knowing that we continuously review all guidelines in accordance with our own procedures.”
5.45pm 19th Apr 2021 – Response from Red Funnel added