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Boat operators await LGUs’ decision to resume trips

May 31, 2020

he Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) in Region 6 (Western Visayas) has said boat operators servicing the Iloilo-Bacolod route are waiting for the decision of the local government units to resume their trips.

MARINA-6 regional director Jose Venancio Vero, in an interview yesterday, said the supposed resumption of operations on June 1 (tomorrow) is still uncertain.

This as the local government of Bacolod City has qualms to accept passengers from Iloilo City and to allow free movement of people.

*Photos By Arman P Toga

Bacolod will only accept Locally Stranded Individuals (LSI) or returning overseas Filipino workers (OFW) provided that they have completed the requirements set by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID),

The three passenger and tourist operators that operate in Iloilo and Bacolod are Weesam Express Fast Craft, SuperCat Fast Ferry Corporation, and Ocean Fast Ferries, Inc.

“If they will resume trips, carry passengers, and they will not be accepted (in Bacolod City port), it will become a problem,” he said.

“… We will see further developments,” he added.

To date, he said the MARINA 6 has not received guidelines on setting the fare rate.

Vero said they earlier issued an advisory for the sea trip operators to set up for the “new normal”.

He said the operators had started installing safe physical distancing markers and disinfection areas.

Once the operations will resume, sea trip operators will only be allowed to carry 50 percent of its capacity.

The three sea trip operators have rationalized their schedules to make safe physical distancing possible at the terminals, he said.* (Gail Momblan, PNA)

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