The collapsed Wightlink car deck. Picture courtesy of Shane Thornton/@IOWImages.
THE Isle of Wight ferry at the centre of an investigation after its car deck collapsed is to return to limited service today (Friday).
An investigation was launched following the collapse of Wightlink's St Helen ferry, last Friday, in which four people were injured.
A Wightlink spokesman said: "The company has been co-operating with the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) and Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) investigations since the incident involving St Helen on the evening of Friday.
"Wightlink is also conducting its own investigation.
"Following consultation and with full approval of the authorities, from today St Helen will be used to support the revised timetable which Wightlink is running on its Portsmouth to Fishbourne route.
"The mezzanine decks will not be used."
Chief operating officer John Burrows added: "The safety of our customers is always our priority at Wightlink.
"Bringing the St Helen back into limited service, with her mezzanine decks safely secured out of use, will help us to get as many people to and from the Isle of Wight as possible.
"All of our ships undergo regular, planned maintenance and, even though St Helen’s mezzanine deck is of a different design to our other vessels, we have taken the precaution of having all our mezzanine decks independently inspected and we will continue to check them daily."
For more on what happened and the investigation to find the cause, please see today's Isle of Wight County Press, Friday, July 25.