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Greens urge action on ferry wash

Green MP and Marlborough farmer Ian Ewen-Street today said people would die in the Marlborough Sounds if meaningful action was not taken to reduce wash from fast ferries.

Mr Ewen-Street made the comment before Transport Minister Mark Gosche travels to the Sounds this week to personally gauge the impact of ferry wash from the two fast ferries which operate between Wellington and Picton.

"The Greens wish to see an interim speed reduction for fast ferries in the Sounds introduced immediately until a technical report which will set a wake standard is delivered in May," he said.

"There have been several incidents over the last three weeks in which people have been endangered and injured as a result of ferry wash. The Greens wish to see immediate speed restrictions as, with Easter holidays approaching, the dangers posed by ferry wash are growing."

Mr Ewen-Street urged Mr Gosche to take a very close look at the ferry wash, to consult widely with locals and to take a firm line with the Maritime Safety Authority.

"There is a great deal of very justified concern over the unacceptable risk posed to people in the Sounds by the wake from fast ferries. The Greens see this risk as escalating and call for an immediate speed restriction in the area, certainly before the Easter break," he said.

Ends

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