CalMac have issued the following statement to The Ileach with regard to the status of the Islay ports:
"Following a heavy berthing at Port Ellen last week, when the MV Hebridean Isles came into contact with the dolphin on the pier due to strong winds on approach, CMAL have instructed us to exercise caution when using the pier in adverse weather, and a note has gone out to vessels advising them of this. "Normally we would have Port Askaig as back up and this wouldn't be an issue, but you'll appreciate that as Port Ellen is the only port currently available our options in bad weather are limited. "We remain hopeful that Port Askaig will be back in service sooner rather than later, but in the meantime there is possibility we may have to cancel sailings if weather conditions are unfavourable. "Naturally we will do everything we can to avoid this, but I am sure you will agree it is prudent to take extra care of Port Ellen until Port Askaig is back in operation. You will also appreciate that the safety of all port users is also of paramount importance. "As long as the weather is ok, there shouldn't be a problem, but we think it is best that people are aware of the possibility, however remote."
This story was published with kind permission of the Ileach local newspaper.