The Steamship Authority freight ferry Katama was sidelined for a short time Wednesday for a bow thruster inspection. The vessel’s 11:05 am crossing from Woods Hole and its 12:20 pm crossing from Vineyard Haven were canceled.
SSA spokesman Sean Driscoll told The Times no repairs were required and the vessel should resume service for its next scheduled trip.
The Katama has suffered a number of problems in recent years and following survey was found to be among ferries in the SSA fleet nearing obsolescence. The Katama along with the freight ferry Gay Head are slated to be replaced by the vessels Aquinnah and Monomoy. Those two vessels, like the Katama and Gay Head, were built as offshore supply ships. The SSA converted the Katama and Gay Head to suit its needs. The Aquinnah and Monomoy are on deck for similar conversions. The SSA expects to award a contract for those conversions in December.
Driscoll couldn’t immediately provide additional information on what prompted the bow thruster inspection.