3:27 PM: Just in from King County:
Service on the West Seattle Water Taxi is cancelled this afternoon because the Rachel Marie [WSB file photo at left] is undergoing repairs. Service will not resume before next Monday, March 28. Passengers should watch for service updates later in the week and over the weekend via the Water Taxi website and subscriber alerts.
… and, of course, here. ADDED 4:05 PM: Linda Thielke with county DOT says the problem was discovered yesterday; the decision for “more extensive repairs” was made today. ADDED 4:18 PM: Matt Reichmann with county DOT answered our question about exactly what’s wrong:
*A small fracture was discovered in the hull of the Rachel Marie below the waterline. The King County Marine Division, in coordination with the Coast Guard, have developed a repair plan to repair the vessel’s aluminum hull plating in way of the fracture. This work will require the Rachel Marie to be put up in dry-dock and be taken out of service through at least the end of this week. …We don’t know when it happened. It was discovered after Monday’s commute and temporary repairs were made for this morning.
We also asked why the Rachel Marie wasn’t being replaced with an Argosy vessel, as it had been for much of the time after last year’s crash; the county says that was investigated but is “not feasible” for this week.