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Hannah Ferrier was dismissed from The Wellington crew in the August 17 episode of Below Deck Med when Captain Sandy Yawn did not feel comfortable taking the chief stew to sea after it was brought to her attention that the crew member had unregistered Valium and a vape pen in her possession on board the vessel.
Captain Sandy explained during the episode why she had no choice but to end Hannah's employment.
"At this point, Hannah, with everything that's been going on with you, hyperventilating at 4 a.m. on the floor with Malia [White], right now, I can't go to sea with you," Captain Sandy told Hannah. "I have the utmost compassion for you, but at this point for the rest of the season, I'm gonna finish it just with [the rest of] the crew. It's not worth it to me. I am a captain, I worked very hard for my license, and I don't want to take that risk. There's too much that's been going on."
Hannah opened up more about her departure during an interview with The Daily Dish over the phone prior to the episode airing. "It was just really, really disappointing to me," Hannah said. "I felt like it got handled really badly."
Hannah said that she wishes she would have been able to discuss the matter more with Captain Sandy before she was dismissed. "If you weren’t there, you can’t really judge," she said. "I guess I’m just disappointed because I feel like I should’ve been given at least the respect of a sit-down conversation where it could be, 'This is what we’ve found. Can you explain?' And it could’ve been a back-and-forth, as opposed to such a drastic measure taken without so much as a conversation after. You know, that was my fifth season with Below Deck. So, I was really disappointed in that, but then I also know that at the end of the day, she is the captain."
Captain Sandy emphasized during the episode that Hannah's dismissal was not personal. "Hannah, do you think if I wanted you off the boat that I would use this? No," Captain Sandy told Hannah. "I could have fired you last year, the year before."
Rather, Captain Sandy said during a separate interview with The Daily Dish that she was forced to take this action due to maritime law's zero tolerance policy. "The maritime law decides, it’s out of my hands," Captain Sandy told The Daily Dish prior to the episode airing. "If [the crew has] to take medication, it goes into the medical locker that’s in a keyed locker."
Captain Sandy explained during the episode why it's so important for all crew members to adhere to the protocols put in place. "It's very hard when you have to let someone go that you care about. However, this is maritime law. It is called the no tolerance law. You have to be drug free. If you're on an airplane, and the plane is in an emergency landing, your flight attendants are responsible for the guests. If something catastrophic happened, the chief stew has a responsibility to gather all the guests, keep them calm," Captain Sandy said on Below Deck Med. "If I didn't address this and something, god forbid, happened, I would be taken to jail, the boat would be incarcerated, and I would lose my license. What she has done is illegal."
Captain Sandy told The Daily Dish that The Wellington also has to comply with the International Safety Management Code, or ISM. "We’re monitored by a designated person ashore, a management company," Captain Sandy said. "And it’s my license or Hannah, so what do you think I’m going to choose?"
Captain Sandy added that she "had all the compassion in the world for Hannah," but she couldn't put her career at risk. "I have a federal license with the United States Coast Guard, like a Maritime Merchant Marine Officer for the federal government. That’s my career. You know, TV comes and goes; my career is a captain. I’ve worked my entire life to get my license, so it’s not about the TV show; it’s about my license and my career," Captain Sandy said. "It’s not a fine line; it’s a solid line in the sand. I will not allow another crew member [to] put my license in jeopardy. I will never do that."
When it comes to whether or not she regrets doing this charter season, Hannah said that she has mixed feelings about it. "It’s a hard one because a big part of me regrets doing it in the first place with how it finished," she said. "If I knew that it was gonna go down like that, I probably wouldn’t have done it."
Hannah noted during the episode that she had been thinking about getting out of the yachting industry even before her season of Below Deck Med came to an end. "I'm very aware of the maritime laws. I've been in yachting for years. It was a mistake on my part. I needed to declare that," she said. "But to be honest with you, I think I've been ready to make a hasty exit from yachting for a few years now. But I don't like going home like this."
Still, Hannah said that she wouldn't trade her time in yachting for anything. "As sad as I am to be leaving on this really dark, horrible note, I would never ever regret my time in yachting. It molds who you are as a human being and who you will always be. Working in yachting is like the highest of highs and the lowest of lows; it's just I'm done with the heart attack," Hannah shared. "It makes me sad that I'm leaving yachting, but at the same time, I think that this next chapter of my book is going to be so much better, even though yachting was such a fantastic chapter."
Hannah's next chapter is already off to an amazing start. She announced in June that she is expecting her first child with her boyfriend, Josh, and revealed last week on Instagram that they will be welcoming a baby girl. The couple's little one is due to arrive in late October.
Want more Below Deck Med? New episodes air every Monday at 9/8c or catch up on the series through the Bravo app.
Watch Hannah and the rest of The Wellington crew open up more about this season in the Below Deck Med Season 5 After Show, above. And check out what's still to come this season, below.
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