August 8, 2020
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The Rhode Island Department of Transportation is reactivating the popular Providence to Newport Ferry, including weekend service to Bristol, on June 26 but noted that capacity will be limited in accordance with COVID-19 public health protocols.

[Above photo by the Rhode Island DOT.]

To keep everyone safe, the number of riders on the 149-passenger ferry will be reduced based on Rhode Island’s Phase II reopening guidelines; allowing for 90 passengers during good weather when outdoor seating is available and 60 passengers in inclement weather when outdoor seating is not available.

Photo by the Rhode Island DOT

The agency said Seastreak Ferry will be the service operator this year and will sanitize all high touch areas between and during runs and will thoroughly clean and sanitize its Ocean State ferry vessel at the end of each day.

Passengers will be asked to follow social distancing practices on board the ship, on the docks, and in the ticketing areas, with face coverings required in all of those locations.

“We are glad that we were able to work with our ferry operator to bring back this popular service that gives all Rhode Islanders an equal chance to enjoy the beauty of the bay and experience Newport, Bristol and Providence car-free,” noted Peter Alviti, Jr., Rhode Island DOT’s director, in a statement.

He added that the ferry will operate through Columbus Day weekend, with weekend service available only through the Labor Day holiday weekend.

editor@aashto.org

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