The National Infrastructure Development Company (Nidco), has denied rumours that the crew of the Galleons Passage abandoned ship in Shanghai, China, because of safety concerns.
“There is no truth to the rumors regarding the Galleons Passage and its crew. Also note, the vessel is en route to Yokohama,” the company told Newsday in an emailed statement.
Former Transport Minister Devant Maharaj, however, suggested differently. In a text message, Maharaj said agents in China had told him the crew was scared after the voyage from Hong Kong to Shanghai because they didn’t think the vessel would be able to withstand crossing the Pacific from Japan to Hawaii. He said a new crew replaced them before the Japanese leg of the journey.
According to ship tracking website, the boat is already in Japanese waters, just a few kilometers from Yokohama.
The Galleons Passage is expected to reach Trinidad at the end of April. The boat, a roll-on-roll-off passenger ferry, desperately needed to service the inter-island seabridge, was expected to arrive in early April but had been delayed because of Chinese New Year. After Hawaii, it is scheduled to cross the Panama Canal, then stop off in Cuba for upgrades, before finally docking in Port of Spain.