Fiji Time: 1:44 PM on Tuesday 20 February

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Boat was not in use, says skipper

Shayal Devi
Saturday, January 20, 2018

LUKE Latianara has been a boat captain for the past three years and his work involves ferrying children from four villages along the Kavanagasau Rd across the Sigatoka River where they ride by Rural Service Licence (RSL) trucks to school.

The 54-year-old is from Sautabu Village in Navosa, which falls in the district of Naqalimare.

A boat belonging to Naqalimare District School is the only one in operation in the area.

He says because of mechanical problems, his job becomes even more daunting.

His work becomes hard during heavy rain, however, weather isn't his only adversary.

He said the boat was out of commission when students started school on Monday.

On Tuesday, the 40 horsepower engine was sent for repairs and replaced by a 15 horsepower outboard.

Distance between the villages and the number of students is also a major issue because he said the fuel covered enough for one trip only.

"The boat can take 15 students at a time with this small engine, before I could take 30," he said.

"And I only make one trip. This week I only made two trips, on Thursday morning and this morning (Friday).

"I ran out of fuel so I could not make the afternoon trips."

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