Two vessels operated by WSDOT Ferries Division were diverted from service on their San Juan Islands routes around noon today, June 23, to assist a vessel that ran aground near . The Sealth and the both were asked by the U.S. Coast Guard to remain on the scene to assist in rescuing passengers. Both vessels returned to service just after 1:00 p.m. The , serving the inter-island route, is running approximately an hour behind schedule. The Anacortes/San Juans routes have returned to their normal schedule, but customers should anticipate heavier traffic and longer wait throughout the rest of the day.
The 133-foot Adventuress, a schooner owned and operated by a local nonprofit organization, ran aground at approximately noon in , between Orcas and . The Sealth was in the process of loading vehicles and passengers at the terminal for the 12:05 p.m. departure when the U.S. Coast Guard asked the ferry’s crew to come to the assistance of the grounded vessel.
The ferry was also asked to assist as it was heading for a stop at with a full load of vehicles and passengers. Both ferries launched rescue boats to assist the grounded sailing vessel. Five passengers evacuated from the Adventuress were taken onto the Sealth.