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Safety concerns delay Golden Gate Transit’s Tiburon commuter ferry service

Safety concerns among other issues at core of delays for Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District Tiburon ferry commuter service.

Safety concerns among other issues at core of delays for the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District’s Tiburon ferry commuter service.  Photo credit: Ashley Kristensen

The Real Facts About the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District’s Tiburon Commuter Ferry Service Delay

A note to friends, neighbors and commuters from the Angel Island – Tiburon Ferry Company

Jan. 29, 2017, Tiburon, California

The Angel Island-Tiburon Ferry Company is the last remaining family owned and operated ferry service in California, following the heritage route five generations of the McDonogh family started in 1870. With Captain Maggie McDonogh now at the helm (She’s been called the Bay’s “Ferry Godmother”) we’re the only woman-owned ferry service in the state.

We want to set the record straight about Tiburon commuter ferry service, especially since the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District seems to want to blame our little company for holding up new commuter ferry service in Tiburon. Our neighbors, friends, and area commuters are frustrated – and so are we!

So here are the facts:

  • While we have a deep connection to Tiburon and Angel Island’s history, we take the most modern, high-tech approach to safety. We have an impeccable safety record. Captain Maggie and the Angel Island Tiburon Ferry Company have rescued troubled boaters, assisted the crews clearing San Francisco Bay following the COSCO Busan oil spill, and, during the Angel Island fire in 2008, we worked tirelessly to evacuate stranded campers and ferry over 1,200 firefighters to fight the fire that threatened the island and its historic buildings.
  • Unfortunately, the Golden Gate Bridge Highway & Transportation District has a lot of work to do in the area of ferry boat safety.
  • Like the U.S. Coast Guard, we raised serious concerns to the District after a commuter ferry collided with part of the Tiburon dock on January 25. We believe that crash happened because of an outdated and unsafe configuration at Tiburon that has to be fixed before bigger Golden Gate commuter ferries begin speeding in.  Unless that happens, people could get hurt. Facilities could be damaged. Oil and other chemicals could pollute our precious Bay. Legal or other regulatory action could arise. Those are the facts. That’s what we told the District. We spoke up for safety. Your safety.
  • No, we aren’t planning to sue the District (we really hate lawsuits!). We’d much rather discuss this as neighbors and partners. So you can imagine our surprise when the District issued a public statement on Friday, blaming us for shining the spotlight on the problems instead of the problems themselves, as it put a hold on its planned Tiburon ferry service which was scheduled to start Monday.

Based on the District staff’s choice to scapegoat us, we’ve been flooded with calls and messages on social media, many of them angry. Please understand ALL of the facts. This is about what the District will or won’t do to ensure your safety. It’s not about our company.

We welcome your inquiries and comments. We’re going to schedule a Town Meeting early next week to hear your concerns and answer your questions. Check with us here on captainmaggie.com after Jan. 31, 2017 for the date, time and location of this Town Meeting.

Yet in the meantime, share your concerns with the District. THEY are responsible for new commuter ferry service in Tiburon, not our little company.

Reach them at 415-921-5858 or:

Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District

P.O. Box 9000, Presidio Station
San Francisco, CA 94129-0601
Fax: 415-923-2013
DistrictSecretary@goldengate.org

________________________________________________________________

Angel Island - Tiburon Ferry is committed to the safety and wellbeing of our community and commuters.

Angel Island – Tiburon Ferry is committed to the safety and wellbeing of our community and commuters.

Angel Island – Tiburon Ferry Media Contacts:

Larry Kamer 415-290-7240 lkamer@kamergroup.com

Devon Ford 916-541-5619 dford@calstrat.com

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