Passengers warned to brace for impact as Staten Island ferry crashes into dock

  • New York's Staten Island ferry crashed into a dock at Whitehall terminal Thursday afternoon
  • The ferry was headed for Staten Island when it turned back to Whitehall
  • Authorities are investigating the cause of the crash, with some reports blaming a power failure

By Alex Greig

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A power failure may have been responsible for the State Island ferry crashing into a dock in Manhattan Thursday afternoon.

The Department of Transportation said the 'hard landing' didn't cause any injuries or damage to the boat.

The boat had left the Whitehall terminal at 2pm bound for Staten Island, but then turned back after an unspecified mechanical problem.

Hard landing: The ferry crashed into the dock but no one was injured on impact

Hard landing: The ferry crashed into the dock but no one was injured on impact

According to SI Live, the ferry had neared the Statue of Liberty before it began to slow down.

Passengers tweeted from the ferry after the crash.

 

'We were almost halfway to SI and the ferry headed back to Manhattan. Had to lay on the ground as we docked because of the impact,' wrote one passenger.

Delays: The crash caused delays at rush hour; authorities are still investigating what caused the problem

Delays: The crash caused delays at rush hour; authorities are still investigating what caused the problem

Venerable: The first motorized ferry between Staten Island and Manhattan began running in 1817

Venerable: The first motorized ferry between Staten Island and Manhattan began running in 1817

Ed V told SI Live that ferry workers told passengers to brace for impact.

'We hit really, really hard,' he said.

A Department of Transportation spokesperson told CBS that the vessel ran into the pilings and the lower level of a bridge at a low speed.

The evening rush hour ferry service was running on a modified schedule due to the incident, causing delays for commuters.

Staten Island Ferry incidents over the past decade

October 15, 2003 - The Andrew J. Barberi collided with a pier, killing 11 people, seriously injuring many others, and tearing a huge slash through the lowest of the three passenger decks.

March 7, 2004 - Actor/performer Spalding Gray committed suicide by jumping off the Staten Island Ferry

July 1, 2009 - The John J. Marchi lost power, and hit a pier at the St. George Terminal at full speed resulting in 15 minor injuries.

May 8, 2010 - The Andrew J. Barberi hit the dock at the St. George ferry terminal with 252 passengers aboard and 37 people were injured.

The comments below have not been moderated.

I experienced a more serious Staten Island ferry crash when returning home from high school in Manhatten in the early 1960's. As the crowd surged toward the front of the boat, I realized the engines had not gone into reverse as they always did upon approaching the terminal at St. George. The next thing I knew, the man next to me pulled me down onto the deck saving me from serious injury or worse. The force of the crash had pushed in the loading dock and the metal exit ramps were directly above my head where I had just been standing. In the disorder and confusion of the evacuation, which took several hours, I lost track of that quick-thinking stranger. I wish I had thanked him.

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