County OKs repairs for Kings Point Ferry

Published 8:58 am Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Warren County supervisors are seeking up to an additional $25,000 in state aid road funds to cover extra repairs to the Kings Point Ferry.

The Board of Supervisors in March accepted a $174,277 bid from 363 Dry-Dock & Repair of Vidalia, La., to repair the ferry, which is the only public access to the Kings Point area since construction of the Yazoo Diversion Canal in 1903 cut it off from the mainland of Warren County.

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The initial repairs included work on the push boat engine assemblies, gearbox engine assemblies, propeller assemblies, sandblasting and painting, but county administrator John Smith said company officials found other problems once the ferry was placed in dry dock.

“They sent us an email outlining the problems,” Smith said. “We decided we should go on ahead and get those things fixed while we have it in dry dock. There is money available in the state aid fund.
We are not using county money for this.”

According to the email from 363 Dry-Dock & Repair, the list of items includes: repair latches on both sides of the ferry, repair bumper stops both sides, check for water in the fuel, repair handrails around both sides, repair a wheelhouse leak around the searchlight, repair the horn on the wheelhouse, replace or repair rudder indicators, replace gear cables and remove filters and tools, clean the engine room and paint.

Repairs to the barge, which carries the vehicles, include repairing or replacing the ramps and making any structural welding repairs and grinding and buffing. The barge repairs are the most expensive item on the list at $12,600. The latch repairs are next at $4,000.

The present boat for the ferry was purchased for about $600,000 in June 2005. A new motor financed with federal highway money was to be installed in 2015. The ferry was damaged in February 2006 when a ramp on the ferry broke away and sank in the canal when the vessel pulled away from Kings Point Island after dropping off a vehicle.

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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