Arriving at which ‘destination?’

The in basket: I don’t use the state ferries much, but in recent trips to Seattle on the Southworth run, I noticed that the once-awkward welcome-aboard speeches, which include safety instructions, have been turned over to tape recordings done by Seattle radio personalities. Crew members used to do them and they frequently weren’t confidence inspiring. It’s an improvement.

When we arrived in Vashon, there was another recorded message, but the speaker didn’t identify himself, and the message began, “You are arriving at your destination.” Return to your cars and make sure you have all your belongings, he instructed.

I knew that I wasn’t at my destination, of course, but it seemed like a stranger to the ferries, going to Fauntleroy, would hurry to his car and fret about still being aboard when the boat left. Shouldn’t the recorded announcement specify which destination you are arriving at when there’s more than one, I asked myself.

The out basket: Then I asked Susan Harris-Heather, long time spokesman for the ferry system. She said she’d never had a complaint from any ferry system newbies who were misled and discomfited by any confusion about where they were, caused by the recorded messages. 

Putting different messages aboard the boats on the tri-corner Southworth run, as in the multi-terminal San Juan Island run, would be difficult because the boats move around so much from route to route that there probably would be more confusion, not less, she said.





One thought on “Arriving at which ‘destination?’

  1. Hahaha! I’ve had more than a few people complain about this exact same thing on this multi-destination run (one couple were from out of town, and just about disembarked at the wrong terminal, until re-directed and corrected by an employee at the last minute).

    I truly miss the real-time crew announcements that let you know in a reassuring (and sometimes funny, personal) tone EXACTLY where you were. Now the announcements are just over-amplified noise by local celebrities and (ugh!) politicians that no one listens to.

    By the way, Susan Harris’ full track record shows that she has never, and WILL never, pay attention to, nor try to understand or find solutions for, her constituents (commuters, riders). She simply does not care.

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