Gov. Jay Inslee wanted to buy ice cream for the 482 people
forced off the overloaded ferry Cathlamet a couple Friday’s ago,
but he couldn’t pull it off fast enough. It would’ve been cool to
see the line swing from the Bremerton ferry dock to Cold Stone
What Inslee and Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson did arrange
was to let everybody ride home from Seattle that night for free.
That was their decision, Peterson said during a ferry community
meeting Friday evening in Bremerton.
It cost $21,000, but might’ve been worth every cent in goodwill. Or
maybe it would’ve been better spend on a traffic cop at the
Fauntleroy terminal. That was just lost revenue, not including fuel
and labor for adding an extra sailing.
The ferry meetings are normally held on Saturdays, but with
Blackberry Fest and other events coming up, it looked for awhile
like August would go without one.
“We felt there were enough things going on with our ferries that we
needed to have this meeting,” Bremerton Mayor Patty Lent said of
the get-together, attended live or online by folks from the San
Juans to Vashon Island. “And it was a time when Lynn could
It was the first appearance for Peterson, who stuck around for 1
1/2 hours. She said the overloading Aug. 15 when Seahawks fans were
headed for an exhibition game against the Chargers was more
complicated than letting too many people on the boat and making
them get back off.
“We always have to be be cognizant of safety first,” Lent quoted
her as saying, “but she never wants it to happen again.”
In case you missed it, the Cathlamet can carry 1,200 passengers
based on the number of life jackets onboard and proximity to other
ferries that could help in an emergency. Crew members for some
reason thought it had a 1,600-person capacity, and loaded 1,682.
The captain pulled out, got a radio call from the dock with the
number and went right back in.
I’m working on a story that details when and how passengers are
counted, and there’s a new development in the overloading incident
I’m sure you’ll find interesting.
Last Friday, the Bremerton boats started about 15 minutes late for
the Seahawks’ bludgeoning of Chicago, but WSF beefed up staffing
and added an extra nighttime sailing so as not to suffer deja vu,
At one point there were two finalists for former ferry director
David Moseley’s job and they came to Bremerton to meet the public.
Operations and construction director George Capacci, named interim
director by Peterson in March, withdrew and former Pierce County
Executive John Ladenberg wasn’t chosen.
People won’t have a chance to talk to the next prospects, whose
application deadline is Sunday. there’s not time for a public
meet-and-greet, said Peterson, who has confidence a hiring advisory
committee that includes Lent. Peterson and Inslee will make the
“We want somebody who’s more on the administrative side, to make
those tough decisions and be bold,” Peterson told the group
The director’s salary range is $119,000 to $145,000.
Several other high-ranking positions have also been open for a
while, including director of vessels, port engineer, senior port
captain and another that WSF wouldn’t confirm Monday. When you hear
that WSF needs to clean house, well, much of it is already done.
You feel bad that Capacci’s facing a bunch of problems without a
full team. At the same time, you have to wonder why so many
executives are leaving.