Fire Island cancels late-night ferries due to rowdy crowds

Late-night ferry service at New York's Fire Island is no more because of what the ferry service company calls "undesirables with no morals" - intoxicated passengers who have caused problems for the vessels' crews.

Fire Island Ferries has canceled its 1 a.m. weekend ferry out of Ocean Beach, where Mayor Jim Mallott says the move is the first step in "taking the village back from the chaos" caused by inebriated visitors.

Company manager David Anderson says intoxicated passengers have become more aggressive. After a rowdy Memorial Day weekend, the company says the unruly behavior had reached a point where ferry crew members were being placed in unnecessarily dangerous situations.

Anderson says that the 1 a.m. ferry was added to the schedule in the early 1990s at the request of the village to help ease the amount of people left loitering in the streets after hours.

As time evolved, the ferry company says the clientele began changing and they needed to provide security on the ferries and docks, increase wages for the crews who ran the trips, and ask for additional support from the local police departments.

Anderson says, "The 1 a.m. ferry has now morphed into a 1 a.m. of undesirables with no morals and borderline unmanageable without instance."

The management team made a unanimous decision that continuing to operate the 1 a.m. ferry would be a safety risk for the crew, the general public, and the vessels.

With the Associated Press

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