•   Monday, 16 May, 2022
Second Channel ferry cleared to resume sailing by safety inspectors

Second Channel ferry cleared to resume sailing by safety inspectors

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A second P&O ferry has passed its safety inspection, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has said.

The Pride of Kent can now join the Spirit of Britain, which the MCA cleared to sail on 23 April, after it was detained for two weeks.

Safety fears were raised after P&O replaced nearly 800 seafarers with cheaper agency staff in March.

P&O tweeted on Monday evening that it would be running a one ship schedule until 12 May.

A spokesperson for the MCA said: "The Pride of Kent has been released from detention and can commence operations when P&O Ferries are ready."

They added no further inspections of P&O ferries are planned at the moment, but will be carried out at the request of the company.

P&O operates four ferries on the Dover to Calais route, with the remaining two vessels the Pride of Canterbury and the Spirit of France still out of service.

Last month it's vessel the European Causeway, which operates on the Irish sea route, spent hours adrift after losing power, having been cleared to sail by the MCA.

The company said it was down to a "temporary mechanical issue".

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has called for P&O to repay the £11m in government money it had received to furlough staff during the coronavirus pandemic.

The RMT union has organised several demonstrations up and down the country, in protest at the sacking of the seafarers by P&O.

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