The first plastic-covered cable which caused shedding throughout Baynes Sound and onto the beaches of Denman Island from the Baynes Sound Connector ferry has now been replaced.
BC Ferries replaced the cable, which is a flattened strand made of steel without a plastic coating, overnight on July 14. The second and third cables will be ready to install over the next few months.
Deborah Marshall, executive director, public affairs of BC Ferries said the change out went smoothly and the new cables will help the corporation reduce their impact on the environment.
In July 2019, residents on Denman Island organized a beach cleanup to collect the shredded bit of plastic from the cable ferry, which runs between Buckley Bay and the island.
“This has been going on for years,” said Denman resident Edi Johnston last year. “It’s never been in this volume, but lately there’s been a huge increase, which is raising red flags.”
At the time, BC Ferries explained they were aware of the shedding and said it was a manufacturer’s defect.
In a release, the corporation noted they share in the communities’ desire to get the matter of plastic shedding resolved.
“When this issue first arose, we participated in a number of beach cleanups. We continue to monitor the performance of the plastic-coated cables and can return for further cleanup efforts if needed.”
The $15-million, 78.5 metre cable ferry began service in late January 2016. It is capable of carrying 50 vehicles and 150 passengers, and with a crossing of about 1,900 metres, it is believed to be the longest cable ferry in the world.