Friday, October 2, 2009

Troubles Continue On The Aussie Island service

TasPorts Lifts Ban – For Now
Shipping News Feature

AUSTRALIA – The people of Flinders and Lady Barron Islands must sometimes wonder why they’re fated to be pawns in the financial game between their designated ferry services and the local port authorities.

Southern Shipping run Government contracted services between Bridport, Tasmania and Lady Barron, Flinders Island, plus Cape Barren Island and Port Welshpool, Victoria. Yesterday one of their ships, the Matthew Flinders, was prevented from docking at Flinders by TasPorts who claim they are owed overdue berthing fees and have a three year history of late payment.

The local Tasmanian Collection Services Gazette apparently also shows that Southern have debts to five businesses on the Island totalling over A$75,000. The vessel stopped yesterday was diverted to the private dock at Bridport and today service was resumed after the outstanding fees were paid to TasPorts.

As this is a Government awarded contract local politicians are demanding a better service for the people of the islands who rely completely on a regular service to transfer passengers, goods and livestock.

pic: Matthew Flinders