Updated: Blue Puttees runs aground in Port aux Basques

Staff ~ The Western Star
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PORT AUX BASQUES — Marine Atlantic says the MV Blue Puttees is secure at its current location and the situation has been stabilized since the ferry ran aground at Port aux Basques this morning around 8:32 a.m.

The Blue Puttees ran aground in Port aux Basques.

In a news release, Marine Atlantic said the vessel was carrying 398 passengers and 91 crew members. No injuries have been reported and there is no indication of significant damage at this point.

As per Marine Atlantic’s emergency response policies, it said all regulatory authorities have been contacted including Transport Canada.

Marine Atlantic said an investigation is continuing and more details will be provided as they become available.

Corner Brook resident Jamie Whalen, who is aboard the ship, said the jolt of the ferry running into the wharf woke him. He was trying to get some sleep in a cabin.

“They’re saying right now we have to wait until the tide comes in” before passengers can leave the ferry, he said.

High tide in Port aux Basques will be 4:58 p.m., according to a DFO tide table.

Whalen said there was a bit of panic when the ship first struck, but people are calm now. He said the crew have been keeping passengers informed of the situation.

"There’s a few peed off people,” he said.

Whalen said a steward has been to every room to check and see if people are OK. He said power is on and food is available for purchase.

Reports from people at the scene say the ferry was leaving for the crossing to North Sydney.

Port aux Basques Volunteer Fire Department is on the scene. No passengers can be seen on the decks.

The vessel was carrying 398 passengers and 91 crew members.

The ship ran into a wharf known locally as T.J Hardy’s Wharf. The property is now owned by the Town of Port aux Basques, where it has an industrial space which it rents to local businesses.

Further updates will be posted online as they become available.

To view photos from the scene in Port aux Basques, click here.

Organizations: Marine Atlantic, Transport Canada, DFO Volunteer Fire Department

Geographic location: Port aux Basques, Corner Brook, North Sydney

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