Stykkishólmsbær and Helgafellssveit are in the process of merging following a public referendum on the matter this year.
A resolution passed by the municipalities’ new joint council notes that 15 months ago, Baldur lost power in the middle of Breiðafjörður and was at sea with passengers for over a day. The ferry has broken down twice more since then; including just over a week ago, on 18th June.
The council adds its weight to calls for a more suitable ship to serve the route. The gcurrent ferry has just one engine, unlike all others that have covered Breiðafjörður since 1955, which all had two. Baldur’s regular breakdowns underline the necessity for two engines, the council states.
Breiðafjörður is famous for its thousands of islands and skerries.
The municipality also urges emergency preparedness be strengthened in Stykkishólmur, to ensure the safety of passengers and all seafarers, and to rebuild trust in the current ferry.
Baldur was the subject of an investigation by RÚV’s Kveikur current affairs programme in April. You can watch and/or read the coverage (in Icelandic), here. The current Baldur entered service in Norway, called Vågan, in 1979. When it was replaced by a new vessel 35 years later, it moved to Iceland. The first application to register the ferry in Iceland was rejected, but approved on appeal.