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Ferries rocked by lack of crew; 31 trips canceled last weekend

September 17, 2013 J

The head of Washington State Ferries pledged Tuesday to increase training for deckhands, after a shortage of qualified crew canceled 31 trips last weekend.

The ferry system has difficulty finding substitutes when workers are out sick or have reached their maximum allowable work hours.

In March, for example, four trips were canceled when a vacationing captain was mistakenly marked on the schedule as on duty, while one deckhand called in sick and another overslept on a different route.

In 2012, dozens of trips were canceled.

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