Generator issue sidelines Nantucket, alarm pauses Woods Hole

A Steamship Authority van was parked in front of the Nantucket Tuesday morning. The ferry was sidelined by a generator issue.

Updated March 23

The Steamship Authority ferry Nantucket became stuck in Woods Hole Tuesday morning due to a generator problem. Because the Nantucket occupied one of only two slips currently open at the terminal, the Island Home was forced to linger off Naushon a while until the slip adjacent to the Nantucket freed up. The other slip in Woods Hole is under construction. 

In emails sent Tuesday afternoon, SSA spokesman Sean Driscoll wrote a generator “failed to start properly,” and was examined.

“Nothing was found wrong with the generator on the Nantucket,” he wrote. SSA personnel were able to restart the generator.

While that was going on, the MV Woods Hole was brought online to take over for the Nantucket. That vessel also encountered a problem. However, by the time the problem surfaced, the Woods Hole was substituting for the Island Home, as the Nantucket was back in service. On the Woods Hole, “an engine alarm sound[ed] while it was docked in Woods Hole prior to its 1:15 pm departure,” Driscoll wrote. “The trip was canceled to allow the crews to investigate; following a system restart, the alarm did not reoccur, and the vessel was cleared to sail by the Coast Guard. One round-trip was canceled (1:15 pm departure from Woods Hole, 2:30 pm departure from Vineyard Haven), but the vessel made its 3:45 pm trip as scheduled.”

When asked if the Island Home suffered a mechanical failure, Driscoll wrote that the vessel left service for scheduled work.

“The Island Home went to Fairhaven for a preplanned maintenance period,” he wrote. “The Woods Hole was already en route when the Nantucket issue emerged, and was able to sub for that vessel instead initially, then it picked up the Island Home’s runs.”

Updated with more details.