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Ruhnu remains inaccessible also on Monday as ferry forced to remain in port

Still not going anywhere: Amalie.
Still not going anywhere: Amalie. Source: Eesti Meedia/Scanpix

The ferry connection to the island is down on Monday as well, as strong wind is keeping the Amalie, the current replacement for damaged catamaran the Runö, from leaving port and operating the Roomassaare-Ringsu route between Ruhnu and Saaremaa.

Operator Kihnu Veeteed announced on Monday morning that the Amalie's departure from Roomassaare on Saaremaa scheduled for 14.00 EEST today Monday is being postponed to Tuesday morning 10.00. The scheduled departure of the ferry from Ringsu at 7.00 on Tuesday morning will be delayed as well and rescheduled for 16.00 the same day.

Just before Midsummer, the fast catamaran ferry the Runö, which usually operates the Pärnu-Ruhnu route suffered motor damage. According to estimates by the operator, the Runö will remain out of service for up to another two weeks.

In the meantime, the smaller ferry, the Amalie, is operating a route between Ruhnu and the larger island of Saaremaa. The ferry is too small to comfortably operate in rough weather conditions, which is why the connection has already been interrupted several times. Ferry connections to Ruhnu have effectively been down since 29 July.

The lack of a connection is hitting the economy of the island hard. In the summer, tourism is an important source of income for the people living on the island. Ruhnu's residents have petitioned the government for a larger and more seaworthy ferry to replace the Runö.

According to Minister of Economic Affairs Kadri Simson (Centre), there are several problems standing in the way of better connections to the island. A better ferry can't be found on the quick, as a suitable ship is available neither in Estonia nor in one of the neighbouring countries. The airline that typically serves a flight route to Ruhnu in the winter can't currently operate because of lacking pilot certification.

Strong wind may affect other ferries as well

Operator Kihnu Veeteed also said on Monday that the current strong wind might affect the connection between the island of Kihnu and the mainland.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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