Ferry Tokitae’s debut delayed for training

SEATTLE — The state’s newest ferry did not go into service Tuesday as planned.

Crews requested more time for training on the Tokitae before it begins operating on the Mukilteo-Clinton route, a Washington State Ferries official said.

Interim Assistant Secretary George Capacci extended the training period to make sure every worker “has a strong comfort level of operating the vessel safely and efficiently,” ferries spokeswoman Marta Coursey said.

Agency leaders are “conservatively estimating” the vessel will go into service early next week. She did not give a specific date.

Officials had hoped to have it running June 15, which marked the start of the summer service schedule.

The 144-car ferry is one of three being built for the state by the Vigor Industrial shipyard in Seattle.

Tokitae, pronounced “toh-kee-tay,” is a Salish word meaning “nice day, pretty colors.” It’s also the name of a Washington orca better known as Lolita at the Miami Seaquarium.

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