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Delma Island ferry service is a hit with passengers

More then 20,000 passengers have travelled by ferry between Jebel al Dhanna and Delma Island in the Western Region since mid-March.

ABU DHABI // More then 20,000 passengers have travelled by ferry between Jebel al Dhanna and Delma Island in the Western Region since mid-March, the Department of Transport (DoT) announced today. The ferry service, which launched on March 19, is the first public transit connecting the island with the mainland. Previously, people could travel to the island on small boats operated by the Delma Cooperative Society or fly into the airport, but all transit was privately run. "We are extremely pleased to see the varied economic and social benefits the new service has brought to Delma Island, including the significant increase in capacity and connectivity to the island, thus providing an improved standard of living for residents. "This is a key part of the plan for a strong and prosperous future for everyone living and working there," said Salem Al Mehairi, maritime sector of the DoT. The six daily services can transport 200 people and up to 50 vehicles per journey. Since the ferry launched, 4,500 cars have been shipped. There are about 6,000 permanent residents on the island, which is only 10 kilometres long and five kilometres wide. In the past 20 years the government has invested in the infrastructure of the island, building municipal buildings and schools. "The increased and enhanced service features the first transportation integration between surface and water transportation," he said, referring to the timetable that coordinates bus and ferry times. "This integration will save passengers time and effort, offer them greater comfort and flexibility, and an improved travel experience." amcmeans@thenational.ae

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