Impact of Superferry Ruling Felt on Oahu

Lee Rice
Lee Rice

HONOLULU (KHNL) -- Many on Oahu were paying close attention to the Judge Joseph Cardoza's decision on Maui.

The reason?  Many still want to book trips on the Hawaii Superferry.

Oahu residents speak out in support of the Superferry.

"Especially having a child I would like to island hop more often and having a baby on a plane is stressful," said Lisa Taylor.  "I was very interested in being a customer and trying it out."

Many families like Janelle Newton's welcome the idea of packing up a minivan and driving on board.

"We had plans," she said.  "We never bought tickets but we were thinking in the future that we would put some tents in the back of the car, his little rough rider jeep in back of the car. You can't take that stuff in an airplane."

Some worry about competition in the inter-island market.

"I am terribly concerned with the fare wars between go!, Aloha and Hawaiian and if there is no Superferry there is no other mode," said Pete Hoskam.  "The two remaining carriers will be able to operate almost in monopolistic position to raise fares."

The ruling affects some Oahu businesses and could mean unemployment for many Superferry employees.

"Probably a lot of sea captains who quit previous employment to go to work now and now they are going to be looking for a job," said Lee Rice.  "It's an unfair ruling."