Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Isle of Wight Red Funnel ferry taken out of service

Red Eagle Image copyright Red Funnel
Image caption The anchor was lost from Red Eagle as it approached East Cowes

A car ferry which lost an anchor during a crossing has been taken out of service after it was discovered its propeller was damaged.

Red Funnel's Red Eagle lost one of its two anchors during a sailing from Southampton to East Cowes on 2 October.

It was found a week later by divers five metres below the surface off the Isle of Wight.

The passenger and car vessel had been operating with one anchor but has now been removed from service.

Replacement parts are currently being sought.

A Red Funnel spokesperson said: "An internal inspection has now revealed additional damage to the internal gear linkages inside the vessel's Aft Voith propeller.

"The extent of the damage requires us to remove Red Eagle from service at this time."

Image copyright Red Funnel
Image caption An inspection revealed damage inside the vessel's Aft Voith propeller

Red Funnel is operating a revised timetable and will introduce its two-boat winter service from Tuesday, three weeks earlier than planned.

In a statement it said it was "truly sorry for the inconvenience this unexpected situation has caused for customers".

It added: "Safety continues to be our top priority and our teams on the ground are working very hard to support our customers with alternative travel options."

Passengers were delayed when Red Eagle's anchor was lost outside Cowes harbour on the 09:00 BST sailing from Southampton on 2 October.

It returned to service the following day after its hull was inspected.

Image copyright Red Funnel
Image caption The anchor was retrieved from the seabed outside Cowes Harbour

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