SOUTHPORT – An extensive process to repair the ramp system at the North Carolina Ferry Division’s Southport Terminal is now underway. Barring weather or other delays, ferry service between Southport and Fort Fisher is tentatively scheduled to resume Oct. 1.
The ramp system, which includes several cables, counterweights and the ramp itself, failed Aug. 27. Without the system in place, it is impossible to load and offload vehicles to and from the ferries. Before resuming ferry service, workers will need to replace cables and repair the damaged portion of the ramp.
In the meantime, motorists can use U.S. Highway 17 and N.C. Highway 87 to travel between Southport and the Wilmington area, including Fort Fisher. Ferry commuter pass holders will be allotted an extension on their passes equal to the length of the service outage.
A separate project to replace the cable systems with hydraulic ones at both Southport and Fort Fisher is tentatively scheduled for early 2020.