Passenger-only boat is out of service today

The King County Water Taxi between Vashon and downtown Seattle hit a log in transit from Vashon to Seattle early this morning, was unable to make its morning runs and will not be in service Friday evening either. The ferry is in repairs in dry dock, and officials said they hope the passenger-only ferry will return to service Monday morning.

On the catamaran's first sailing at 5:38 a.m. from Seattle to Vashon, the vessel collided with a log or other debris in the water, said Susan Whitmore of the King County Marine Services Division.

"They slowed way down and noticed an immediate vibration," she said. It is likely that the boat's propeller was affected by the collision and staff are in the process of determining the extent of the damage to the boat.

Only one passenger was aboard the sailing, and the boat turned around and returned to Seattle without making it to Vashon.

Unfortunately, King County Ferry District's e-mail alert system ran into technical difficulties, and those on the e-mail list did not receive the message that the catamaran would not make its morning trips until later in the morning, Whitmore said.

"We're going to do a better job of communicating with folks this afternoon, and we're sorry for the delay in communication this morning," she said.

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