A commuter ferry traveling from Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, to a pier near Wall Street crashed on Wednesday. Fifty-seven people were injured in the ferry accident, including one person who was injured critically. The boat was travelling at roughly 14 miles per hour when it struck the pier. Many passengers were thrown to the deck and the ferry itself was gashed in the right front side. The accident called to mind similar ferry crashes which occurred in 2003 and 2010.
The 2003 accident involving the Staten Island ferry caused 11 fatalities and many other serious injuries. The pilot of the ferry on that fateful day was found to have passed out at the controls. He had taken painkillers the evening prior. Both he and his supervisor were sentenced to more than a year in prison for their roles in the disaster.
There is no evidence yet to suggest that the pilot of the ferry was incapacitated at the time of the crash in this case. The crew all passed breathalyzer tests after the crash. The National Transportation Safety Board announced that it is sending a team to New York to investigate the cause of the crash.
This ferry charges commuters $655 per month for weekday transportation from New Jersey to Manhattan. While onboard, passengers have a right to expect that all reasonable safety measures will be undertaken. The 57 injured passengers deserve to know what went wrong to cause their suffering. They deserve to be compensated for the harm done to them by the ferry company.
Source: Reuters, “Commuter ferry crash in New York injures 57, one critical,” by Chris Francescani, 9 January 2013