Investigation Begins Into Seastreak Ferry Accident in NYC
The Seastreak passenger ferry out of Highlands collided with the Pier 11 dock near Wall Street at 8:50 a.m. Wednesday.
Updated 6:30 p.m. Wednesday
The National Transportation Safety Board said it will interview the captain of the Seastreak Thursday morning, and begin a thorough inspection of the damaged ferry, following the accident in lower Manhattan Wednesday morning.
Seventy-four rush hour commuters were injured when the ferry experienced a hard landing at Pier 11 at 8:50 a.m. Officials said there were 326 passengers and five crew members on board.
In a statement posted on its website, Seastreak said, "We are simply shocked and stunned that this happened. We know passengers rely on us to provide safe transit on our boats - and safety is the number one concern for our company. We are very sorry this accident occurred."
The company said that if any family members needed assistance getting to one of the three Manhattan hospitals to visit a family member involved in the accident, they should call 1-800-Boatride (1-800-262-8743).
For an hour after the crash, broadcast reports showed dozens of passengers immobilized on stretchers, covered in blankets for warmth. New York Police and Fire Department members were on the scene. A line of ambulances queued up on the FDR Drive to transport patients to hospitals for evaluation. The scene, shown on live television, appeared to be orderly.
Winds were at 6 mph, gusting at 7 mph, according to WABC TV's meterologist.
People who were standing in preparation to disembark were thrown about when the boat crashed into the mooring, but people remained calm, passenger Frank McGloughlin told WABC.
Others told WABC that even though they were seated, they were slammed into the seat backs in front of them, and some felt their knees were injured.
Most injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.
The following service alert was posted on the Seastreak website on Jan. 10 at 9 am.
The 4:45 PM Atlantic Highlands, the 5:55 PM East 35th Street and the 6:10 PM Pier 11 departures are cancelled on 1/10/2013.
Seastreak has reinstated our 6:40 AM departure from Highlands. In addition, the 10:00 AM departure which has been temporarily operating out of Highlands will now be departing from Atlantic Highlands.