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Wednesday weather re-ignites cruise berthing debate

While it has been smooth sailing for the airport renovations, the plan to build a cruise berthing facility in George Town has faced stormier seas. Government has confirmed the project will not be shovel ready before the election.

Those on the pro-port side point to yesterday’s rough weather and delays in tendering cruise passengers to their ships as a prime example of why a new dock is needed. But not everybody agrees.

Long lines and frustration for cruise passengers Wednesday afternoon as shifting winds kicked up rough seas in George Town harbour.

“It was something to see, and it was scary for us, because we hope that nobody got hurt seriously hurt,” said 9th generation Caymanian Ruth Bodden.

Rough seas continued into Thursday, but winds are expected to die down overnight

Cruise passengers huddled under shelters to avoid late afternoon showers, waiting for the bumpy ride back to their ships. Ms. Bodden watched it all unfold from the Cayman Craft Market.

“It was scary, we are watching it. Tenders trying to get out but they looked like, they looked like little pills rocking around in the sea,” she recalled. “You could hardly see them through the waves and the wind was so bad that they weren’t going anywhere. They were gunning their engines and you could hear it, but they were going anywhere, they were just staying right there.”

On social media, the pro-port group Cayman’s Port, Cayman’s Future posted videos they said highlight the deficiencies of the tender system and our island’s ‘substandard’ cruise facilities. Ms. Bodden doesn’t buy that argument.

“From what I understand, even when we have days like this, the port, they’re not going to be able to dock at the port anyway,” she said.

Government went back to the drawing board to address environmental concerns with its initial port design, vowing to move the piers into deeper water in a design update is still yet to be seen by the public.

Ms. Bodden told Cayman 27 Wednesday’s dicey tendering situation could have been avoided by paying better attention to the weather.

“It was indicated that we were going to have some rough weather, they should’ve told that to the passengers so they would’ve left on the tenders a little earlier before it started to get real choppy,” said Ms. Bodden.

 

About the author

Joe Avary

Joe Avary

Joe Avary has been with Cayman 27 since 2014. He brings 20 years in television experience to the job, working hard every day to bring the people of Cayman stories that inform the public and make a difference in the community. Joe hopes his love for the Cayman Islands shines through in his informative and entertaining weather reports. If you have a story idea for Joe or just want to say hello, call him at 324-2141 or send an email to josephavary@hurleysmedia.ky

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