Watch: Whidbey Island ferry gets blown sideways during 60+ mph gusts
WHIDBEY ISLAND, Wash. (KOMO) -- Being on a ferry during a November windstorm can be a harrowing experience -- not just for the passengers, but for the captain as well!
Watch as the M/V Salish leaves the dock at the Keystone Ferry Terminal in Whidbey Island where wind gusts in that area had been reported around 60 mph:
"We just got done with our live shot and I looked over my shoulder and out of the fog came the Salish," said KOMO photographer Peter Mongillo, who captured the whole thing on video. "I was amazed that this boat was able to go through that type of punishment and I saw it coming in and I was excited. My heart was racing. I was like, 'I'm going to see something pretty cool.' "
"This is by far, the most challenging run in the ferry system because of the wind that comes off Admiralty Inlet and just this small space that this ferry comes into," said KOMO reporter Kara Kostanich, who was also at the ferry terminal.
Mongillo and Kostanich watched the captain flawlessly guide the Salish into the Keystone Ferry Terminal. Then things got interesting when the boat left to head back to Port Townsend.
"The Salish was going out of the bay and the wind was is coming directly at the boat from the side as well, and as the boat was going out I was panning and panning, there was nothing to reference the movement of the boat," said Mongillo. "I made a reference point of the land, and then you really saw how the boat was maneuvering through space and on the water and it was going sideways. It had to have been planned, it's like fishtailing. The captain knew what he was doing."
"I've been on hundreds of ferry rides and I've been on the Port Townsend-Keystone ferry and I've been up in the San Juans. These guys and girls on these boats know exactly what they're doing, they know the capabilities of these boats," said Mongillo. "It's amazing technology that really helps them guide this vessel in a safe manner so I'd be on that boat, I wish I could have."
That ferry run frequently sees rough weather conditions, but even on the Edmonds-Kingston run, ferries had some tough conditions:
A wind gust on that ferry registered 61 mph at the peak of the storm Monday afternoon.