If MP Gerry Byrne is correct in his facts right about incidents involving Marine Atlantic ferries, an official probe is not only called for, it is vital that one be done.
In a TC Media story, Byrne outlined a long list of problems on the Gulf ferries — some serious and some just frustrating.
Most of the information, according to the opposition politician, has been sent to him by Marine Atlantic workers who have more reason than most to be concerned about safety on the huge ships.
If these problems happened on dry land there might be some argument they do not require any official investigating, but these reported cases — if a true reflection of the circumstances — are happening on water in the fierce North Atlantic and hundreds of lives are involved. Marine Atlantic management should also be the first to step up and request some official body look at the way it does things and implement any recommendations posthaste.
The Crown corporation has just had at least two major incidents that caught the attention of the public.
Fortunately, there were no injuries to workers or passengers and only time was lost, and some frustration the worst result.
Inconveniencing the travelling public is bad enough but if there is a systemic operational or safety problem that hasn’t been rectified or identified, it’s time quick action was forthcoming.
Considering where the company operates its ships, Marine Atlantic has a good safety record but there is always more that can be done. Someone in authority should delve into Byrne’s list of faults and find out if he and his informants are wrong or right.
Going the extra mile to make sure these ships and crews are up to the task is never a waste of time.
Too much is riding on it.