All 31 students and the crew aboard a water taxi which experienced an engine room fire this morning are safe.
The Graduate, a Gulf Islands Water Taxi vessel, was en route to Pender Island Thursday morning carrying students from Mayne and Galiano islands when an engine alarm started. A fire contained to the engine room was quickly extinguished by crew, a news release from the Gulf Islands School District stated.
Agencies including the Canadian Coast Guard and BC Ferries responded and the 31 students were transferred to another water taxi vessel and taken to Pender Island. The students arrived at school and the school district stated that they “arranged counselling supports at schools and communicated directly with impacted families.”
“The district shares the concern of families and community and is thankful that this event was resolved quickly and without physical injury to those involved,” the school district stated. “The district has been assured that the Gulf Islands Water Taxi crew followed all safety procedures.”
The district stated it is working with the contractor, Gulf Islands Water Taxi, to better understand what happened.