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Staten Island Ferry Sailing For First Time Since Sandy; Port Operations Continue Resumption

Flooded Staten Island Ferry Terminal (credit: Alex Silverman / WCBS 880)

Flooded Staten Island Ferry Terminal (credit: Alex Silverman / WCBS 880)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - For the first time since before superstorm Sandy hit the Tri-State area, you will be able to take commute by boat between Staten Island and Manhattan.

Service resumed at noon on the Staten Island Ferry.

The first departure was the ferryboat Sen. John J. March, which departed from St. George, followed by half-hourly service, which will continue for the remainder of the afternoon.

Saturday will have regular service and Sunday’s service will be augmented to accommodate the New York City Marathon.

The only way for people from Staten Island to get to Manhattan until today was via New Jersey or Brooklyn.

“With crews working nonstop to get ferry service up and running, Staten Islanders can now show that the hurricane cannot take the wind out of this borough’s sails,” said New York City Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan on Friday. “The return of Staten Island Ferry service provides a critical transportation and economic link for Staten Islanders.”

Meanwhile, the Coast Guard said it is working with its port partners to ensure commerce continues to flow into the port.

Fuel barge and tug traffic is open. Other deep draft vessels are allowed to enter the waterways on a case-by-case basis in coordination with the Captain of the Port.

The following guidelines and restrictions are in place:
– Manhattan and Bayonne cruise ship terminals are now open. The Brooklyn cruise ship terminal remains closed.
– Ferries and taxi services are operational on the Hudson and East Rivers.
– Port Jersey Channel is open.
– Gravesend Bay anchorage is open.
– The Hudson River is open to all vessel traffic.
– Tugs and barges are permitted to transit the Arthur Kill waterway from the south but the waterway is under a no wake zone restriction.
– All inspected passenger vessels are authorized to operate except within the exclusive zones outlined on New York Homeport.
– Buttermilk Channel is closed to all vessels not conducting surveys or debris retrieval operations.

More specific guidelines and exceptions on the status of the port are posted to New York Homeport.

As operations continue, agents are reminded to provide updates to the pilots and facilities to ensure the efficient entry of vessels.