B.C. Ferries anticipates unplanned service disruptions on all routes over the coming months

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      The highly contagious Omicron variant could create delays for people hoping to travel by ferry along the south and mid-coast of B.C.

      Today, B.C. Ferries warned of "unplanned service disruptions on all routes, and particularly on inter-island routes, over the coming months".

      It's not only due to the Omicron variant's potential to force employees to take sick leave, however.

      According to B.C. Ferries, service could also be hampered by regular cold and flu season, winter storms, and vaccination policies, which have reduced the availability of crews.

      "Crewing is a complex, logistical task that considers the individual's qualifications and the number of skilled mariners required for the various roles onboard each vessel, as well as where they live and work," B.C. Ferries said in a news release. "Regulations require these positions to be filled with the appropriate crew, or the vessel cannot sail. Even a small number of crew that are unavailable to sail can have a significant impact on service if replacements are challenging to find."