Wightlink ferry passengers stranded in Solent during Storm Eunice arrive back safely in Portsmouth

DOZENS of passengers on a ferry which was left stranded in the Solent during the peak of Storm Eunice have arrived safely in Portsmouth.

By Tom Cotterill
Friday, 18th February 2022, 3:10 pm
Updated Friday, 18th February 2022, 11:50 pm

The Wightlink ferry St Faith, from Fishbourne to Portsmouth, was forced to wait in the Solent as winds from today’s maelstrom raged across the area.

The decision was taken by the ship’s captain to remain at sea until the wind speeds of force 11, gusting at force 12 – between 68 and 78mph –died down amid safety concerns.

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Wightlink's St Faith ferry arrived safely in Portsmouth after being left stranded in the Solent during Storm Eunice. The ship is now setting off from the city to the Isle of Wight.

There were 90 passengers on board the ship. They were provided refreshments by the 13 members of the ship’s crew.

A spokeswoman for Wightlink has confirmed to The News the vessel has now safely berthed in Portsmouth – and is now preparing to travel back to the Isle of Wight with a fresh set of customers.

The spokeswoman added: ‘St Faith, the 10am sailing from Fishbourne, was heading to Portsmouth when the wind peaked. The master decided not to enter Portsmouth Harbour until conditions improved.

‘There were 90 passengers and 13 crew on board St Faith, with 43 vehicles.’

The violent conditions pictured in Portsmouth Harbour earlier this morning. Photo: Tony Hicks

Wightlink had suspended it ferry service during the storm’s peak.

However, trips across the Solent are now beginning to resume, although some disruption is still expected.

Earlier, the Isle of Wight recorded record-breaking windspeeds of 122mph around The Needles.

Meanwhile, gusts of almost 70mph were recorded across the Portsmouth area.

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