Washington State Department of Transportation Ferries Division (WSF) has sold four 1927-built Steel Electric class vessels to Eco Planet Recycling, Inc. of Chula Vista, Calif. The total combined sale price for all four ferries is $200,000.
The Washington State Department of General Administration approved the sale on Wednesday, June 17 followed by completion of the signature process on Thursday, June 18. Receipt of the payment was confirmed late on Friday, June 19.
“The Steel Electric class vessels served as unforgettable icons of life in the Pacific Northwest,” said Assistant Secretary for WSF David Moseley. “We now must continue to focus our attention on getting new vessels built and into service, starting with the 64-auto ferry under construction.”
In November 2007, Secretary of Transportation Paula Hammond ordered theQuinault, Illahee, Nisqually and Klickitat removed from service due to safety concerns. In 2008, the Washington state Legislature directed WSDOT to sell the vessels. WSF had been in discussion with potential buyers up until their sale on Friday to Eco Planet Recycling, Inc.
The ferries are currently tied up in Bainbridge Island at the ferry terminal and Eagle Harbor Maintenance Facility. The ferries are scheduled to be towed to Ensenada, Mexico beginning in mid to late-July – pending weather conditions and completion of towing preparation – where they will be recycled.