Tuesday, May 6, 2008

HI Superferry: Onboard Report for 5/5/08

A long-time friend rode the ferry from Maui to Oahu on 5/5/08. He was suppose to take my camera and provide a detailed report, but ran into some difficulties of his own and so could only provide a general report with no pics.

First, I was on the other side of the island, but I talked to him on the cell as he was getting on and checked the forecasted conditions which were wind of 15 kn and waves of 5 ft for Beaufort 4, BOM 2 - Relatively Calm, Less than Likely Seasickness. I called him later when they would have been finishing the Kaiwi channel, and he reported the forecast was correct, almost nobody got seasick. He considered it a nice ride under those circumstances.

Second, the 'agent' did not do an exact count, but he repeated a good estimate. He thought there were more than 100 people, but less than 200. He also thought there were less than 60 vehicles. He only noticed one commercial name, FedEx, with one of their vehicles going to Oahu. He said there were 3 or 4 large commercial vehicles.

These observations do not show a substantial increase in either private or commercial ridership, even with Aloha Air Cargo's disruptions last week. There were articles last week and even today in one of the newspapers speculating on the cargo opportunities, but so far it appears only 3 or 4 companies including one intermediate freight forwarder have made use of this. Meanwhile it appears Aloha Air Cargo will be going strong.

My friend who has been a high level hotel manager before he retired said he did want to say that the employees did show much aloha and overall his was a good experience given the low wind and calm seas yesterday. I asked him if any executive came around to greet the passengers while under transit and he said, "No, no big shot executives were seen."

Also, got the following report today from another "asset," on Molokai, the same source that filmed the video on youtube that Austal references in a press release:

"Hi Brad: Looks like HSF is routing daily now up the channel between Molokai and Lanai instead of going Northshore.--George"

Somebody else tells me they are not in their legally mandated whale season anymore. Although, with no north swell, it is hard to see any 'comfort' reason for taking the south route. The south route is still more shallow and there are still other mammals other than just Humpback whales. Was wondering if the south route may be slightly shorter than the north route?

Aloha, Brad

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