It was the hydraulics: It's always the hydraulics.
North Shore residents and regular users of the ferry system across the Hastings River no doubt gave an understanding and resigned nod when news filtered through that the Settlement Point ferry slipping was setback due to mechanical issues.
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council said the ferry was likely to be back in service on Friday.
"Unfortunately the Settlement Point Ferry has experienced a hydraulic motor issue and will not be returned to service tomorrow (Wednesday)," council said.
"It is expected that the ferry will now be returned to service on Friday and we will keep you updated.
"Thanks for your patience."
Northside Progress Association president Kingsley Searle said the setback was disappointing.
"We have had this happen before (having a setback) but historically there always seems to be an issue with the hydraulics," he said.
"But it is good that they were able to pick this problem up early.
"Hopefully, we won't have the grief (of a breakdown) down the track.
"This is disappointing for residents and regular users of the ferry system."
Mr Searle said he understood some residents had moved medical appointments to suit the two ferries being operational.
"I guess this is something we have to live with," he added.
He looked forward to both ferries being back online on Friday.
A further issue in getting the ferry back online on Thursday was that Marine Rescue was not available to assist when the ferry was to be replaced.
Mr Searle said the Association has approached council about utilising a replacement ferry in the future.
"From what we have been told, the costs are prohibitive to do that," he said.
"That was actually discussed at our most recent meeting with council and the mayor.
"The fees to tow it to this area and the insurance are too high, so it is not an option."
He said other discussions included tweaking the bus service to include Corella Estate and expanding its use to the wider public.
"We have previously raised the matter of extending the operating hours of the Hibbard Ferry hours," he added.
The cashless ferry payment system trial has also been extended through to Christmas.
The constant dry conditions also meant that more residents were being forced to purchase water.
"So we really need that second ferry to operate to ease the long queues from building up on either side of the Settlement Point ferry," he said.
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