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May 8, 2010

Staten Island ferry crashes into pier

The Staten Island ferry boat Andrew J. Barberi struck the pier at the St.George Terminal at around 9.30 a.m. this morning, resulting in what the Coast Guard described as "serious damage to the facility's ramps and the main decks of the boat above the waterline."

There were 252 passengers and 18 crew members onboard at the time of incident.

According to one report, 37 people were hurt, 17 of whom were taken to area hospitals with one man being rushed in critical condition to Richmond University Medical Center with chest pains

The Andrew J. Barberi is the same ferry that crashed into a pier in 2003 with 11 fatalities.

This morning's incident reportedly occurred when the ferry's reverse throttle failed. Though the crew were unable to stop the ferry, there was time to move passengers away from the front of the ferry.

After the 2003 incident, New York City instituted major changes in the operation of the Staten Island Ferry system. Undoubtedly there will now be extensive examination of how effectively promised changes have been implemented.


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