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pn-ferrycarts-012109 Ferry board to vote on cart restrictions

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pn-ferrycarts-012109 Ferry board to vote on cart restrictions

PORTLAND — The board of directors of Casco Bay's ferry service is
expected to vote Thursday on a new policy regarding carry-on items.
The policy was crafted after some riders on Casco Bay Lines began
pushing large and unwieldy carts onto ferries, said Catherine Debo,
executive director of Casco Bay Lines.
"We have some carts that are well beyond what is supposed to be carried as personal baggage," Debo said.
The new policy allows personal carts to be a maximum length of 25
inches from front to back, excluding the handle. The width cannot be
any more that 25 inches measured from the outside of the wheels and
carts can't be taller than 43 inches.
Carriers, according to the policy, must be reasonably loaded with
personal items and cannot protrude above the allowable cart dimensions.
Four-wheeled dollies are not allowed as personal carts. Acceptable
personal carts include two- or four-wheeled personal carts, two-wheeled
personal wagons, two-wheeled dollies, baby carriages and normal,
wheeled suitcases.
Gasoline tanks and any other items containing gasoline – lawn mowers, weed wackers, snow blowers – need to be run dry before being allowed on ferries, per order of the the Coast Guard.
Once on board, carts and other carry-on items should be kept at the passenger's side and should not be placed near paid freight.
Debo said the ferry service wanted to get the new cart policy in place
so that year-round residents headed to Peaks Island, Long Island, Cliff
Island, Great Diamond Island and Chebeague Island could get used to the
limits before the influx of summer people.

"It's been pretty noncontroversial at this point," Debo said. "I think it is generally perceived as pretty reasonable."
If approved Jan. 22, Debo said staff will post the new policy around the ferry terminal and on ferries along with handing out copies to riders.
This spring, the ferry service will most likely paint an outline of an allowable sized cart along with a height chart so people can tell whether their carts are allowed, or if they should check them as freight.
The Casco Bay Island Transit District board meets Thursday, Jan. 22, at 7:45 a.m. at the terminal on Commercial Street.

Kate Bucklin can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or kbucklin@theforecaster.net.
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