Ferries at centre of bomb threat get all clear

Police are at the scene in Picton after a possible safety threat was received. Photo: File

Police teams have almost finished searching two ferries at the centre of a possible bomb threat, finding nothing of significance on board.

Two Cook Strait ferries were evacuated this morning as specialist search crews hunted for a possible bomb on board.

Police say both the Bluebridge ferry and terminal building in Picton have been searched and given the all clear.

Police teams are currently searching the Interislander ferry terminal building and vessel in Picton.

The Bluebridge ferry near Picton will be allowed to dock once the other vessel leaves to travel north. An Interislander ferry that was being held at Wellington has been released to travel south.

Police would like to thank both the Interislander and Bluebridge companies, and the public, for their patience while we continue to work to resolve this incident.

Two Cook Strait ferries have been evacuated this morning among concerns over public safety. Photo: File
Two Cook Strait ferries have been evacuated this morning among concerns over public safety. Photo: File

Marlborough Area Commander Inspector Simon Feltham says police received information this morning which officers are following up on.

“Police are investigating and as a precaution, specialist search group staff will be searching both the Interislander and Bluebridge ferries currently berthed in Picton,” he says.

All passengers have disembarked from the two ferries and have been taken to a safe waiting point.

“Police continue to liaise closely with both the Interislander and Bluebridge as we work to resolve this matter,” says Inspector Feltham.

Police received information this morning over a possible safety threat on board the Cook Strait ferries. Photo: File
Police received information this morning over a possible safety threat on board the Cook Strait ferries. Photo: File

Interislander executive general manager Walter Rushbrook says police are responding to the incident in Picton.

“Cook Strait ferry services are currently being disrupted as the result of Police responding to an incident in Picton.

“We are awaiting direction from the Police to resolve the situation as quickly as possible.”