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Alaska DOT says Prince Rupert ferry service canceled ‘until further notice’

Vehicles load onto the Alaska Marine Highway System ferry Malaspina on a 2019 run to Prince Rupert, British Columbia. (Photo by Eric Stone/KRBD)

Ferry service between Alaska and Canada won’t resume this spring as scheduled. That’s according to a Wednesday statement from the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities.

Restrictions on travel due to COVID-19 have delayed work on the Prince Rupert terminal in British Columbia. The facility is being upgraded to comply with new regulations for U.S. customs officers working in Canada.

The international ferry link was suspended last year after U.S. customs officials announced they would no longer inspect vessels without an armed Canadian police presence in the terminal.

Local, state and federal officials from both countries have been working on a solution ever since.

A meeting planned this month between state and federal officials has been postponed, delaying any resolution. But the statement says the meeting will be rescheduled after coronavirus-related travel restrictions are lifted.

All sailings between Ketchikan and Prince Rupert are canceled until further notice.

The Alaska Marine Highway System extended its policy waiving cancellation fees for any reservation until May 11, 2020. To cancel or make changes to an itinerary, contact the AMHS reservation call center at 1-800-642-0066 or call your local AMHS terminal.

Jacob Resneck, CoastAlaska

Jacob Resneck is CoastAlaska's regional news director based in Juneau. CoastAlaska is our partner in Southeast Alaska. KTOO collaborates with partners across the state to cover important news and to share stories with our audiences.

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