Local
4:45 pm
Tue December 17, 2013

Bald Head Island Ferry runs aground near Battery Island; 13 people injured

It was just after 9 AM Tuesday morning when the Bald Head Island Ferry "Adventure" traveling to Bald Head Island from Southport ran aground near Battery Island. 

The impact of the grounding injured thirteen people – one potentially seriously.  That person was taken to New Hanover Regional Medical Center.  Eleven others went to nearby Dosher Hospital in Southport for treatment.  

WWAY’s Sarah Murphy was on the scene and spoke to some deeply-shaken passengers.

“People I talked to described the crash as something you’d see out of a movie.  They told me people were thrown about the boat, people were bloodied, bloody noses, and a lot complaining of back pain.”

Coast Guard Spokesman Lieutenant Lane Munroe says the beached vessel will remain on land until high tide – when the ferry operator will attempt to re-float it.   Munroe won’t speculate as to why a passenger ferry, which travels the same route multiple times a day seven days a week could have run aground. 

“Situations of a ferry running aground with injuries in the state of North Carolina is extremely rare…"

But the cause of the accident, he says, is under investigation.

"At this point, the Coast Guard does not have a discernible reason why the ferry ran aground.”