Hovertravel: BBC - Captain stops the job to boot mask-rule refusers off


Established Member
29 Aug 2010
Brilliant :)

Coronavirus: Isle of Wight hovercraft stops amid passenger face mask row
The captain of a hovercraft was forced to suspend a crossing because two passengers refused to wear face masks. Police were called as the service from Southsea to Ryde on the Isle of Wight was halted when the pair became "verbally abusive", Hovertravel said. The firm has banned them and cancelled their travel cards for breaching its abusive behaviour policy, on the 17:30 BST service on Friday. Anyone travelling on public transport in England must wear a face covering. Hampshire Constabulary said officers spoke to the pair when they arrived in Ryde, after the crossing resumed. The argument was apparently about one of the passengers wearing a mask which had a broken strap, a police spokeswoman said. No formal complaint was made and officers noted the passengers were no longer allowed to use the service. Under the rule, which came into force on 15 June, passengers without a covering will be asked to wear one, or face being refused onboard or fined £100. Hovertravel said: "Staff have engaged with these customers on a number of previous occasions, explaining the reasons why, and encouraging the use of face coverings. "The captain stopped the hovercraft during the crossing to re-iterate the regulations but was forced to escalate the process by involving the police to enforce compliance. "The customers became verbally abusive and so Hovertravel followed its zero tolerance policy to any abusive behaviour by cancelling both customers' travel cards."

They were claiming it was a broken strap?! :lol:
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RailUK Forums


5 Jul 2018
Out of curiosity, why is the hovercraft different from other methods of transport? There seem to be no exemptions for disabilities, as seen on buses, trains, or even the Wightlink ferries.

That said, even if there were exemptions they wouldn't include having a mask with a broken strap, and it certainly sounds like these passengers would fail the attitude test!


29 Jun 2012
Reading the report, it seems this wasn't the only instance.
Hovertravel said: "Staff have engaged with these customers on a number of previous occasions, explaining the reasons why, and encouraging the use of face coverings.
Seems they ended up being banned for becoming "verbally abusive" contrary to Hovertravel's policies.


Established Member
7 Jun 2014
Broken strap,eh?

Moscow 1974, in the Kremlin (part of it was a museum) as a tourist. You had to wear a soft covering over your outdoor shoes, two sizes (basically M or F). My size 12 feet couldn't really cope with the covering, and on the crowded staircase between the two floors it slipped off: as I stopped to try to recover it, a melee ensued and from the intermediate landing I became aware of shouting. I looked up to see a young soldier pointing a rifle at me, and from the look in his eyes I knew he was about to use it. The rest of my visit to the museum was with one foot covering on, and the other hors de combat :s

Off topic, I know, but puts the subject in historical perspective.
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